Patrick Reed's caddie and brother-in-law, Kessler Karain, was involved in an altercation with a fan on Saturday during the third day of the 2019 Presidents Cup.
Golf Channel reported news of the altercation on-air in between the two four-match sessions played at Royal Melbourne.
"There was a little bit of an altercation earlier today, after the morning matches with Patrick Reed and Webb Simpson," said Steve Sands of Golf Channel. "Kessler Karain, the caddie for Patrick Reed, got into an altercation with one of the fans."
— Fore Play (@ForePlayPod) December 14, 2019
In a statement sent to Barstool Sports, ESPN and other outlets, Karain said, "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. 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 had enough. And this gentleman was one of them.
"Riding on the cart, guy was about 3 feet from Patrick and said, 'you fucking suck.' I got off the cart and shoved him, said a couple things, probably a few expletives. 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. Unless his bones break like Mr. Glass, the most harm done was a little spilled beer, which I'm more than happy to reimburse him for."
Apparent video of the incident surfaced later in the day on Twitter.
Patrick Reed's caddie defending his cheating employer's honour. Go home. You're not welcome here. pic.twitter.com/z1nB8LHerA
— Benjo (@brushbrook) December 14, 2019
However, Karain may have left out a crucial detail from the story. According to Golf Digest, an eyewitness reports Karain threw a punch at the fan without physical provocation.
According to witness of altercation between Reed’s caddie & fan at Presidents Cup: The fan was swearing, Kessler Karain confronted him and there was a shove and a punch that made contact with the fan’s shirt. Contact was initiated by Karain.
— Brian Wacker (@brianwacker1) December 14, 2019
Golf.com's Dylan Dethier reports Karain was expected to meet with PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan this afternoon to discuss the incident.
The PGA Tour released a statement on the incident saying: "Following an incident that took place on Saturday at the Presidents Cup involving Kessler Karain and a spectator, Karain will not return to caddie for Sunday’s final-round Singles matches. We will have no further comment at this time."
Reed released a statement with the Tour's which read, "I respect the Tour's decision. We are all focused on winning the Presidents Cup tomorrow.”
Reed's swing coach, Kevin Kirk, will step in as caddie for Reed's Sunday singles match against CT Pan.
Reed and Simpson lost their Saturday morning fourball match against CT Pan and Hideki Matsuyama by a 5-and-3 margin, marking the American duo's third consecutive loss this week together. Reed is sitting the afternoon session.
The 2018 Masters winner has been facing heckling from fans and spectators this week in the wake of his rules violation at the 2019 Hero World Challenge. During the Sunday final round, Reed was in a waste bunker on the 11th hole when he appeared to twice use a practice swing to move sand away from the path to his ball. Reed was penalized two strokes by PGA Tour officials for illegally improving his lie under the Rules of Golf.