In a stunning development, Patrick Reed’s caddie has been ruled out for Sunday’s singles at the Presidents Cup after getting into an altercation with a fan at Royal Melbourne.
Kessler Karain, Reed’s brother-in-law and longtime caddie, got into an altercation with a spectator after Reed’s morning fourballs match, but no other details were released by officials. The PGA Tour issued a statement Saturday evening that said Karain will not return for singles but did not provide further comment.
Tiger Woods was asked about the situation after he and International captain Ernie Els made their singles pairings.
“We came here as a team,” Woods said. “We’ll rally around our teammate and we’re excited about tomorrow.”
Reed, who was not made available to reporters, released a brief statement. “I respect the Tour’s decision. We are all focused on winning the Presidents Cup tomorrow.”
Kevin Kirk, Reed’s coach, will take Karain’s spot Sunday, Golfweek confirmed. Reed will play C.T. Pan in the third singles match.
Karain reportedly sent a statement to Barstool’s Fore Play Podcast and ESPN, confirming he jumped off a golf cart and shoved a spectator who he said cursed at Reed.
“As a caddy one of your jobs is to protect your player. And unlike several other sports, in golf fans can get pretty close to Athletes,” Karain said in a statement. “We have been known for having fun with some good banter, but after hearing several fans in Australia for 3 days some had taken it too far, I had enough. And this gentleman was one of them.”
Karain said the fan was about 3 feet from Reed when he said, “you (expletive) suck.”
“I got off the cart and shoved him, said a couple things, probably a few expletives,” Karain said. “Security came and I got back in [the] cart and left. I don’t think there’s one caddy I know that could blame me.”
Karain added “the most harm done was a little spilled beer, which I’m more than happy to reimburse him for.”
Reed and Webb Simpson lost their fourballs match to C.T. Pan and Hideki Matsuyama 5 and 3. The Internationals hold a 10-8 lead heading into Sunday’s 12 singles matches.
“P-Reed, he’ll be just fine. He relishes that moment,” said Gary Woodland. “I think it’s been tough, but I think he expected that going in. If anybody can handle it in that situation, P-Reed will be just fine.”
Reed came to Australia fresh off a rules violation and subsequent two-stroke penalty at the Hero World Challenge.
Right from the get-go fans have let him have it before and after each shot. Cries of “Get in the bunker!” among others have been heard frequently.
After making a clutch birdie putt in a foursomes match with Webb Simpson on Day 2, Reed did a mock shovel motion twice with his putter, in response to the continued barbs.
Several of the International players, most notably Cameron Smith and Marc Leishman, have encouraged spectators to heckle Reed, or as the Aussies like to say, “give him a sledging.”
On Friday, Leishman said a “football crowd is what we needed.”
Things got chippy with Smith during Thursday’s session in which Reed brushed up against Smith, who had called Reed a cheater for his actions in the waste bunker at the Hero.
Perhaps the incessant heckling has affected Reed, who was one of Woods’ captain’s picks.
He has gone 0-3 so far before being sidelined by Woods for the Day 3 foursomes.