Rory McIlroy Battles a Robot in Chipper Ad for Golf’s European Tour

Who'll get taken to the cleaners?

This ad for golf's European Tour pits Northern Irish phenom Rory McIlroy against a wise-cracking golf-ball-hitting robot named Jeff in a contest to see who can chip the most balls into washing machines on a driving range. (As a kid, McIlroy practiced this way for some reason. Perhaps he was raised in a laundromat.) "Losing to a robot is a bit like losing to Martin Kaymer," Jeff quips. Golf humor—as lame as the game itself. When a washer lights up and sounds like a pinball machine, the bot asks, "Is that the same noise you heard when you signed your sportswear contract?" Yeah, paying Rory $100 million to wear the Swoosh and battle better-known cyborgs is much better than feeding starving people around the world. Thanks, Nike! The video has gone viral with almost 2 million views in four days. The washing-machine imagery is goofily memorable, but the video's four-minute running time feels like 40 minutes to me. McIlroy giggles incessantly. I kept hoping the robot would chip the guy into one of the washers, or maybe tear off his arms and use them as clubs. I guess we'll have to wait until Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia are paired up again to see something like that on a golf course.