Koepka on the Ryder Cup: Naps, partners and captaincy
Brooks Koepka has played on two Ryder Cup teams and he has now been passed fit for a third appearance this week. In 2016 he contributed three out of four points, in France just 1.5 from the same amount of matches.
This year he has already been asked by captain Steve Stricker to tone down his silly feud with team-mate Bryson DeChambeau.
In a recent interview with Golf Digest he was asked about the dynamic and, rather than giving the politically correct response on an interview that he knew would be coming out on the eve of the matches, he didn’t exactly give off the impression of being overly fired up to winning the cup back.
“It’s tough. There are times where I’m like, I won my match. I did my job. What do you want from me? I know how to take responsibility for the shots I hit every week. Now, somebody else hit a bad shot and left me in a bad spot, and I know this hole is a loss. That’s new, and you have to change the way you think about things.
“You go from an individual sport all the time to a team sport one week a year. It’s so far from my normal routine. I can barely see my team. It’s hard to even go to the gym. At the Presidents Cup in New York, we had to go to the gym at 5am to get it in. We went to the Equinox, and it was me, Dustin and Tiger, and we come back and go to a team meeting.”
He then took things down another couple of levels…
“Under regular conditions I take naps a lot. I might take an hour, hour-and-a-half nap, or just chill on the couch and watch SportsCenter before rounds, after rounds, whatever. There’s no time to do that at the Ryder Cup. There’s no time to decompress.”
As for the prospect of the captaincy, something which seems even less likely after this interview he added: "One of the things I’d do is get the caddies more involved. I thought it was weird in France that there was a sign on the door that said, “No caddies allowed.”
"As a captain, it might be tough to get into a player’s brain, but it’s easier to get into a caddie’s brain, and that’s the next guy in line. Like, if you want to understand how it went, go talk to Ricky [Elliott] because sometimes I can’t even articulate what I’m doing or how things are going. He’s the best guy to talk to about how I’m feeling. There are times when I respond to people asking me if I’m OK by saying, “Yeah, I’m good,” but I’m not good! I’m not feeling right. And he’ll tell you."