The Open 2018: Jhonattan Vegas shoots five-over-par 76 after visa, flight and club issues

Jhonattan Vegas
Jhonattan Vegas arrived at Carnoustie by helicopter, without his golf clubs

Jhonattan Vegas needed a late helicopter ride - and a new set of clubs - to make his first round at The Open after visa issues held him up.

The Venezuelan arrived at Carnoustie barely an hour before his tee time, after a drama that began when he found his UK visa had expired.

He was two over after three holes, carding one birdie against six bogeys, and shot a five-over-par 76.

That left Vegas 10 shots off the pace of clubhouse leader Kevin Kisner.

The 33-year-old, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour, had only realised his visa had expired when he was ready to leave his home in the United States for the east coast of Scotland.

He managed to obtain the necessary documentation, but it took longer than he expected - before he left on the last possible flight that would get him to Carnoustie on time.

"It was a complicated issue with my visa trying to get to the UK. I thought I had it but I got confused with the date," Vegas told BBC Radio 5 live.

"This was last week, then we had the weekend and it was supposed to arrive on Tuesday, but then there was a problem with the carrier and it arrived on Wednesday."

The other problem was that he arrived in Scotland without his golf bag - meaning that he had to call on caddie Ruben Yorio to help get him a replacement set of clubs.

Vegas then took a helicopter ride from Glasgow Airport before his 10:31 BST tee time.

He added: "I wanted to make it here as this is such a great event.

"I got here this morning and then had a helicopter ride. I landed around 6:30am, but the big issue was that Air Canada decided to leave my clubs in Canada."

Vegas missed the cut on his Open debut appearance at Royal Birkdale last year.

Jhonattan Vegas
Jhonattan Vegas later tweeted: "Everything seems to be against me to get my visa and make The Open. First, UPS mechanical problem and passport is running late and second, weather through New York City and flight is delayed. Probably need to find another flight."

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