IT'S BEEN dubbed the craziest birdie in golf history but Aaron Baddeley isn't complaining.
Baddeley is outright second in the Texas Open, behind Charley Hoffman, and the talk of the golf world thanks to his bizarre mix of dreadful and sublime on the par-4 17th hole at TPC San Antonio.
The Australian arrived at the drivable 336-yard hole with a chance to grab a share of the first-round lead but wasn't sure whether to use his driver or three-wood.
He opted for driver with a cut shot but pulled his drive left into trees.
After checking it out, Baddeley took an unplayable lie penalty and went back to the tee.
The second time around, he choked down on the driver, hit his tee shot and started walking, unaware initially that he had holed it for a birdie three.
"I just thought I'd just hit it straight and so I hit it and started walking and then heard the crowd going nuts," Baddeley told PGA Tour.com.
"I was like, wait, I just made birdie.
"I just said to myself ... hit a straight one, it was straight downwind, get it going straight. So I hit the second one and said, man, why didn't I do that the first time? And it rolls up and goes in."
Golf Digest called it "the craziest birdie he or anyone has probably ever made in golf history".
One wit tweeted: "I bet he wishes he didn't hit that first drive so baddeley."
It's believed to be only the second time in US PGA Tour history that a player has holed out from the tee on a par four.
But the wayward first drive means it doesn't compare with Andrew Magee's hole in one albatross at TPC Scottsdale in 2001 - when Magee's ball rolled through a group putting on the green and took a deflection off a player's putter into the hole.
Baddeley's improbable birdie, along with a hole-out from just off the green on the 18th hole, allowed him to finish at four-under-par 68, just one-shot back of Hoffman.
The omens for the rest of the tournament are also good for Baddeley.
Australians have thrived in the US tour's Texas events in recent years.
Last year, Australians won three of four events during the Texas Swing - the Texas Open (Steven Bowditch), Houston Open (Matt Jones) and Crowne Plaza Invitational (Adam Scott).
Baddeley and Hoffman had the good fortune to play in the afternoon when conditions were a bit better, after strong winds had battered the morning starters.
American Max Homa was a shot behind Baddeley with Phil Mickelson and Ryan Palmer a further shot back.
Defending champion Bowditch opened with an 80.
US Open champion Martin Kaymer had a two triple bogeys in an 82.
Graeme McDowell was one of three players from the morning wave who withdrew while shooting high numbers, citing injuries.
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