It was going for my private parts - Schwartzel happy to accept blow to wrist
Charl Schwartzel's participation in the Valspar Championship could be threatened by the wrist injury he suffered when he was hit by a ball in Tuesday's pro-am, but the South African revealed things could have been much worse.
Schwartzel was forced to leave the course after 10 holes of the pro-am event, having been hurt at the beginning of his round when a ball from one of his amateur playing partners hit a tree and ricocheted into the South African's left arm.
Although the 32-year-old has a sore wrist as a result, he was able to laugh as he told reporters where the ball was headed before he instinctively stuck out his arm in an act of self-preservation.
"It hit the tree and it came bouncing back at some speed. It was going for my private parts and I just did a little stop there," said Schwartzel, while showing reporters how he blocked the ball with his wrist.
"I'm just happy... I think I got it better than what I would have if it wasn't for my reflexes."
Providing further details of the incident, Schwartzel added: "I've played golf for 28 years now and I've never been hit by a golf ball until this morning. It was really bad luck.
"One amateur was on the left side in the trees and my ball was on the left outline of the trees. He hit this tree and it ricocheted right on to me and hit me on the wrist, right on the tendon.
"My whole hand went numb and I stopped after 10 holes. I tried to play but I couldn't even hold the club any more.
"I've iced it and taken painkillers and anti-inflammatories. We've tested it and at least the nerve is good, it's just muscle, just swollen, I can't move the wrist properly. I'll just keep icing it. He [the amateur player] feels very bad, but it's not his fault."