Villain Reed finally ‘sands’ up when it counts
The villain of Royal Melbourne delivered in the end.
US bad boy Patrick Reed, sans his suspended caddie, vindicated his captain's faith with a crushing 4&2 last day win over Chinese Taipei's C.T Pan.
Winless across the first three days, Reed birdied his opening three holes to silence the hecklers who had hounded him all week.
"You make birdies, you don't hear much," a defiant Reed declared.
"The past couple of days were tough. Today still wasn't easy. I played some amazing golf.
"The biggest thing, which I felt like I didn't do early on … was we didn't get up on top.
"If you come out storming … the crowd's pretty quiet. I was able to do that today, kind of get going, and really silence the crowd a little bit."
With his brother-in-law and caddie Kessler Karain pulled out by tournament chiefs for clashing physically with a fan, Reed had his swing coach Kevin Kirk on his bag.
He declined to condemn the local galleries saying only "the golf course and Melbourne has been unbelievable".
What he had learned in the "tough" saga since being embroiled in controversy in the Bahamas, he said, was "to continue grinding and not let the crowds or other people get in the way of what you're trying to do, and that's play golf".
"I think the biggest thing is, with what went down yesterday, and really how the whole week was … was to come out today and continue playing some solid golf, continue playing well and to go out and get a crucial point early in the day to help the team."
His captain, Tiger Woods, who made the bold call to select him to play this week, said he discussed the Karain incident with Reed on Saturday night.
"Absolutely, we talked about it," Woods said.
"Patrick was responsible for his point. Just go out there and focus on what you need to do to get your point, just like the 11 other players. We had our responsibility to get our point."
Reed is adamant he did not intentionally improve his lie in the bunker waste in the Bahamas but the storm it brought to Melbourne, culminating in Karain's tangle with a spectator, will live long in Presidents Cup infamy.