Johnson left red faced after practice swing gaffe

Zach Johnson hits ball on practice swing but it's not a penalty	
				Rob Schumacher  USA TODAY Network

Zach Johnson hits ball on practice swing but it's not a penalty Rob Schumacher USA TODAY Network

It was a lucky escape for the former Masters champion, as the rules take into account intention to make a legitimate stroke.

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

Johnson had fun with the incident, giving people on the tee box permission to laugh because, as he said, "That's embarrassing".

Johnson was standing on the 13 tee at even par for the day after a bogey on 12, when he took a practice swing with his driver, and accidentally made contact with his ball that was on the tee. His ball then ricocheted off the right tee marker and landed about 10 yards in front of Johnson, who casually walked up and grabbed his ball.

"Yeah, that was a good one there", Johnson said. I thought I had done it all but now I know I've done it all.

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

Luckily, tournament officials did let him replay the shot without assessing him a one-stroke penalty, as the actions as deemed unintentional. He finished with a birdie on the par-5 13th, which moved him to 1 under on the afternoon.

For one moment on Friday Zach Johnson joined the amateur hackers, leaving playing partners Ian Poulter and Matt Kuchar in stitches.

But Johnson is adamant he will not the suffer the same misfortune on Saturday, as he said: "I don't think I could do it again if I even tried".