Brooks Koepka denies fight with Dustin Johnson as fall-out from USA's Ryder Cup thrashing continues

Telegraph Sport
The Telegraph
Brooks Koepka with his girlfriend, Jena Sims, during a practice round at Dunhill Links Championship - Action Plus
Brooks Koepka with his girlfriend, Jena Sims, during a practice round at Dunhill Links Championship - Action Plus

Brooks Koepka insists there was no fight between himself and Dustin Johnson in the aftermath of Europe's convincing Ryder Cup victory over the United States in Paris, despite witnesses reporting the two team-mates had to be ­separated after a flare-up in the European team room.

Koepka and Johnson - known as the "Bash Brothers" due to their similar big-hitting styles - are regarded as good friends, live close to each other in Florida and work out at the same gym, so it came as a shock when reports emerged that the pair clashed after being invited into the European team room following the biennial contest at Le Golf National.

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Rumours of a rift between the pair were initially prompted by Johnson's partner, Paulina Gretzky, when she deleted every picture of Koepka from her Instagram account. She was said to be close by when the row erupted. One of the European players' wives also witnessed the incident, and an insider said that she was "clearly shocked and upset by the nastiness, which was very threatening".

However, in a press conference today ahead of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, Koepka has attempted to rubbish these claims and refutes any punches were thrown.

"This Dustin thing I don't get," Koepka said. "There was no fight, no argument.

"He's one of my best friends. I love the kid to death. We talked on the phone Monday and yesterday so you tell me how we fought. People like to make a story and run with it. It's not the first time there's been a news story that isn't true that's gone out."

The reported fall-out between Koepka and Johnson was not the only sign of disharmony in the US team, with Masters champion Patrick Reed blaming Jordan Spieth for the end of their successful Ryder Cup partnership and claiming it was "not smart" for captain Jim Furyk to leave him out of two sessions.

<span>Dustin Johnson (left) Jordan Spieth (centre) and Brooke Koepka (right) after the US's defeat</span> <span>Credit: ap </span>
Dustin Johnson (left) Jordan Spieth (centre) and Brooke Koepka (right) after the US's defeat Credit: ap

"As far as camaraderie, it was fine, it was perfect," Koepka added. "The problem is you guys (the media) try to find a reason why we lost and the simple reason is we just didn't play good enough.

"We didn't make the putts, hit the fairways, especially me. I lost two matches and halved another one. If I won those, if Tiger (Woods) wins his; Dustin lost one with me and then I think lost in the singles.

"If we play how we're supposed to play we win, it's simple as, but there's nothing wrong with our team. Our team was great, Jim was great."

Brooks Koepka also described hearing that a spectator struck in the eye by one of his tee shots could suffer long-term consequences as "probably one of the worst days of my life".

Corine Remande was hit by a wayward shot on the par-four sixth hole and there have been reports she could lose the sight in her right eye.

Koepka said in a statement on Twitter on Tuesday that he was "deeply hurt and saddened" by the incident and also addressed what happened ahead of the Alfred Dunhill.

"Yesterday was probably one of the worst days of my life," Koepka said. "I haven't had too many tragedies in my personal family where there's been a loss or any kind of tragic accident so I've been lucky in that sense.

<span>Brooks Koepka checks on the injured spectator</span> <span>Credit: afp </span>
Brooks Koepka checks on the injured spectator Credit: afp

"I wasn't told until I got to the course - I'm not the biggest person on social media - so when I got here and had about seven missed calls and 25 text messages I was like, 'What's going on? Then I was told the news and obviously I am really heartbroken.

"My stomach sank. Yesterday was probably one of the hardest days trying to focus and play golf just knowing what was going to come when I was done.

"I spent an hour-and-a-half of my round on the phone trying to understand what was going on because it's hard to get the real story of what was going on. I didn't know if it was fake or not and you want to find out. It's sad and I really am torn up about it."

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