Photog: Tiger Woods Flub Captured by "Instinct"

Could it be one of the greatest sports photos of all time?

On Saturday, Tiger Woods was playing in the Ryder Cup in England. He's surrounded by fans and photographers. Then he shanks the shot.

The ball is coming right at the camera. Mark Pain took this once in a lifetime shot. And yes, it hit the camera and him.

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But what was it like to get that shot?

Pain said on "The Early Show" from London he got the shot by "pretty much instinct."

Pain explained, "As a photographer it's a great moment there to see Tiger amongst the fans so closely, and it's great for them, as well, to see it. But you're totally focusing on Tiger, his expressions because, once the ball goes past you, you still have moments to capture. He can throw his club away. He can celebrate. He can do whatever he normally does. But you just focus totally on Tiger."

Pain also showed "Early Show" co-anchor Harry Smith his camera, which survived the blow.

Pain said, "The camera's fine. Nikon 3DS. It's taken a bit of a knock here, but it's absolutely perfect. It's only a month old."

But why and how -- with Tiger's caddy Steve Williams watching out -- did the shot happen?

Pain said, "Normally, you know, 99 times out of 100 -- or probably with Tiger 999 times out of 1,000 -- he would chip that within two or three inches of the hole. And when we're working with Tiger, we've never had any problems getting that near to him, because we know there's never going to be an issue. But, all the grass had been trampled by the spectators and he just seemed to catch it really wrong, and it digs out to his right, and it just headed straight towards me, hit my camera, then hit me and landed at my feet."

The photographers, Pain assured Smith, were in the right position.

He explained, "Tiger's caddie, Steve, he's got a reputation for being very, very strict with us photographers, you know. But we were all in a perfect position. The marshals had agreed where we were, and everyone was absolutely fine. There was a very wide angle for him to play a shot into towards the green. So, you know, didn't work out."

As for Tiger, Pain said of the golfer's reaction, "He couldn't believe it. I think he couldn't believe he'd taken that shot, really. There's the second shot. The shot after the ball hits the camera, he's looking like, this is not the way I planned this. Yeah. ... His face looks like thunder, doesn't it? He's not happy."