U.S. Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk has broken his silence on a rumoured fued between Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson, and said Patrick Reed knew ‘weeks in advance’ he would playing with Tiger Woods.
Jim Furyk spoke to Golf Channel’s Tim Rosaforte during an interview which aired Monday, denying a bust-up between Koepka and DJ on the plane over and discussing the pairing's drama between Patrick Reed and Jordan Spieth.
Furyk talks Reed/Woods pairing and Reed's comments
During the interview on Monday, Furyk rubbished Reed's claims that he was 'blindsided' by the Captain's decision to break up the successful pairing of Reed and Spieth during the Ryder Cup, stating that all four players knew 'weeks in advance'. He also revealed that Reed was involved in the discussions over which position he and Woods would play in during Friday's opening fourball matches.
"When I started looking at who (Tiger) would pair well with, I kept coming back to Patrick Reed," Furyk said. "There was always the idea that we could go Tiger and JT (Justin Thomas), and Patrick and Jordan, but ultimately they knew going into the week, weeks in advance, they knew they would start the Ryder Cup with Patrick and Tiger being partners."
Furyk added that pairing Spieth and Thomas was an "easy decision" because of the strong chemistry the two have, but them being paired together was only a certainty if Woods made the team, as he had thought of Woods and Reed first.
"If there was any concern about them being partners together, it was how close they were," Furyk said.
"The fact that they played together had a lot more to do with me pairing Patrick and Tiger together... If Tiger doesn't make this team and he's a vice captain, then Jordan and Patrick go out together."
When asked whether he knew Reed was unhappy, Furyk said he wasn't.
'No... Patrick and Tiger were excited about playing together.'
Furyk's comments are at odds with what Reed had said after their loss last week when he claimed it was Spieth's influence which saw them separated.
"The issue's obviously with Jordan not wanting to play with me," Reed had said afterwards to the NYT. "I don't have any issue with Jordan. When it comes right down to it, I don't care if I like the person I'm paired with or if the person likes me as long as it works and it sets up the team for success. He and I know how to make each other better. We know how to get the job done."
Earlier in the week, Reed's wife Justine had also taken aim at Spieth, telling one person on twitter to 'ask Jordan' about why he hadn't wanted to play with Patrick.
"I can assure you- you're wrong. Patrick never said that he didn't want to play with Jordan. Maybe you should ask Jordan why he didn't want to play with Patrick. You don't have to love the people you work with- but when you have chemistry and success, you go with it for the TEAM."
It certainly appears Reed had hoped he would be paired back with Spieth after the U.S.A's first ever foursomes whitewash on Friday afternoon, but instead he played with Woods again in the morning and sat out the second foursomes session in a row.
"I thought he might go back with the groups that have worked in the past," he said. "For somebody as successful in the Ryder Cup as I am, I don’t think it’s smart to sit me twice."
Furyk on DJ/Koepka argument
Furyk denied the report from a French newspaper that claimed the 'Bash Bro's' got in to an argument on the plane over to Paris (something Koepka also spoke out against), although he did imply something happened on the Sunday night after the U.S.A's loss to Europe.
While he didn't elaborate on exactly what that was, Furyk did say that whatever happened between the pair has brought them closer.
"Whatever altercation started, or what happened, it was very brief. It was very short. Neither one of them really took anything out of it," Furyk said.
"They’re like brothers. Brothers may argue, brothers get into it. But they’re as close as they’ve ever been, and it really had no effect on either one of them."
During a press conference at the Dunhill Links last week Koepka had denied the claims the pair had fallen out, stating he was one of his 'best friends' and the whole rumour was 'laughable'.
"This Dustin thing I just don’t get," Koepka said. "There was no fight. No argument. He is one of my best friends. … People like to make a story and run with it, and it is not the first time a story has come out that is not true.
"It's just laughable, it really is."
Whatever happened, it's clear it wasn't a big deal.