Marc Leishman to Aussie fans: Patrick Reed’s rules controversy is ‘ammo’
Patrick Reed’s rules gaffe during the third round of the Hero World Challenge not only cost him two strokes on the round but could also have implications for the upcoming Presidents Cup.
In the aftermath of Reed’s rules fiasco, Marc Leishman spoke to this very plausible consequence at the Australian Open.
“I did see it and it looked pretty ordinary, to be honest,” Leishman told reporters. “It didn’t look too good for him.”
Without getting into specifics, Leishman implied that there are opportunities abound for spectators to wreak some havoc on Captain America and Team USA.
“There are opportunities there, put it that way,” Leishman said. “I think he’s definitely opened a door there, that he’s brought on himself.”
However, Leishman was clear that while fans should heckle and cheer, they should not cross the boundaries of decency.
“As long as it’s not disrespectful,” Leishman warned, “You never want to cross the line, but I think there is some pretty good ammo there, isn’t there?”
Failing to qualify for the team on points, Reed’s selection to Team USA was already considered a somewhat controversial choice by captain Woods. This latest incident has also dragged up Reed’s past transgressions against golf’s honor system, inflating the potential for distractions.
With International Team members, including captain Ernie Els and fellow Australian Adam Scott, already calling on the crowds to be more of a factor at Royal Melbourne, tensions are running higher than usual for a Presidents Cup.
Earlier this week, Scott made it clear he wanted Aussie fans to temper their excitement to see Woods play.
“Quite bluntly, we want the home-crowd advantage, and I’ll be disappointed if they are cheering enthusiastically for Tiger or anyone on the U.S. team.”
The Presidents Cup kicks off Thursday at 9:30 a.m. ET with the first round fourball matches. Time will tell if Team USA can overcome this latest blow and bring the cup back to U.S. soil.
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