After announcing he wouldn’t play in next month’s BMW PGA Championship, Ian Poulter has made the mistake of mixing it up with irate golf fans on Twitter.
Skipping the tournament hardly makes Poulter a jerk or a loner – both Henrik Stenson and Sergio Garcia are doing likewise – but Poulter can’t seem to stay off Twitter as he argues with fans about his reasoning for the absence.
Poulter took the social media site under his handle (@IanJamesPoulter) to defend the move by relaying that the course doesn’t play to his strengths – having played it 13 times and missed the cut eight times. He compared his plight to track and field star Usain Bolt with the message, “Would Usain Bolt compete in a marathon. I didn’t think so … Enough said.”
His Twitter followers came up with some witty retorts of their own, including one from user @ReturnsAgain who quipped, “@IanJamesPoulter And you have played in how many majors? And won none. will you give them up to(sic)? fool.”
Poulter was back at it again on Thursday, tweeting “What’s even more funny. I never pulled out… I never entered in the first place.”
Poulter often seems to find himself at the center of controversy, on and off Twitter, dating back to his 2008 Golf World interview in which he said, “I know I haven’t played to my full potential, and when that happens, it will be just me and Tiger.”
In 2010, he used an anti-Semitic name for fans of Tottenham Hotspur on Twitter and was forced to apologize, which he did again later that year after posting videos to Twitter of he and his young children eating cereal out of the Ryder Cup trophy.
Ironically, it was comments about Poulter made by former PGA America president Ted Bishop in 2014 that cost Bishop his job. The former chief called Poulter “a little girl” for his critical comments of the US Ryder Cup captains.
Poulter has 12 European Tour titles and two PGA wins, but hasn’t brought home a trophy since 2012.