Zach Johnson accidentally hits ball with practice swing at Masters

Getty Images

Getty Images

But here's the thing: it was a practice swing, so the shot doesn't count.

Johnson, giving his club a forceful swing through the air, clunked the ball into the marker, proving that even major champions can make silly mistakes.

The extraordinary incident became even more freakish once the ball had richocheted off the tee marker and come to rest only a couple of metres away, still on the teeing ground.

When he took the tee box on No. 13, Johnson sat two shots above the cut line.

"Oh s--!" Johnson said immediately. "I don't think I could do it again if I tried".

Under United States Golf Association rules, a ball isn't considered to be "in play" until it's actually hit from the tee area.

According to a new rule, because there was "no intent" to hit the ball, Johnson does not receive a penalty on the hole.

Johnson looked stunned for a moment, checking to see the reaction of his playing partners, Ian Poulter and Matt Kuchar.

The 510 yard par 5, however, can offer players the flawless opportuinty for relief on the final hole of the famed Amen Corner, and so the 43-year-old would have been pretty confident of his chances of making up for his bogey at the par-3 12th.

You guessed it, four shots and 510 yards later, Johnson sunk a birdie putt to take him to within one of level par.

"Only if I've been drinking", Kisner said.

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