"Once they worked it out they thought it was quite funny"

Welcome to the prank of the century.

Brisbane locals Morgan Ruig and Evan Shay, 28, who fooled North Korean officials into letting them compete in the 2016 North Korea Open have been stunned at the global interest their hilarious story has generated.

Did they think many people would even find out about the gag? "Absolutely not," Mr Ruig laughingly told Yahoo!7 Sport.

"We took a few funny photos for five or six of our close mates and somehow it popped up on a property website and exploded from there."

The golfers taking in their official duties. Source: Lupine Travel Facebook.
The golfers taking in their official duties. Source: Lupine Travel Facebook.

The pair were in Beijing for a polo tournament and decided to throw their names into the hat for a spot in the Pyongyang event. With no real way of checking if the duo were professional golfers, officials accepted their application and before you know it, they became Australia's national golf team.

Only problem is....they're both pretty ordinary golfers.

The boys show off their blazers in North Korea. Pic: Instagram/evshay
The boys show off their blazers in North Korea. Pic: Instagram/evshay

"We’d just come out of a long lunch, our mate actually did the online application form and they got back to us the next day saying we were in," Mr Ruig said.

“I don’t think there was much due diligence done on their end.”

Once they hit the course, it became pretty obvious what was going on. After Shay shanked a ball into the water, his caddy turned to him disappointedly, telling him they “brought great shame upon [their] families.”

Source: Lupine Travel Facebook
Source: Lupine Travel Facebook

To make things even better, the boys thought they'd better look the part on arrival in Pyongyang, going so far as to get custom Australian blazers made up, looking as professional as ever as they were escorted around Pyongyang for their official duties.

"We got them made in Beijing just at a tailor near our hotel," Ruig said.

"She was pretty shocked when we gave her a 24-hour turnaround, so she charged us a 40% surcharge for what was easily the biggest piece of clothing she’s ever made."

The boys alongside the rest of the field. Source: Lupine Travel Facebook.
The boys alongside the rest of the field. Source: Lupine Travel Facebook.

Pulling off such a comedic heist in North Korea seems like a risky exercise, especially considering they had to surrender their passports on arrival, but according to Ruig, getting back to Australia proved to be surprisingly simple.

"Getting out was really streamlined, they look after us, I mean once they worked it out they thought it was quite funny. Wasn’t any hassles getting out."

"I didn’t feel unsafe at all.'

The boys in China before traveling to North Korea. Pic: Instagram/evshay
The boys in China before traveling to North Korea. Pic: Instagram/evshay

Ruig and Shay finished second and third last respectively at the event, shooting over 120, with the Nepalese ambassador’s 15-year-old daughter the only one to finish behind them.

Despite their ordinary result, the boys are pretty happy with their efforts and now have their sights set on competing in the 2017 Somali Open.

You can't make this stuff up.


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