Woods defends picking the divisive Reed

Tiger Woods says his US captain's pick Patrick Reed is the type of fiery competitor he wants on his Presidents Cup team at Royal Melbourne next month.

TIGER WOODS of the US plays a shot during a practice round prior to the PGA Championship at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Missouri.
TIGER WOODS of the US plays a shot during a practice round prior to the PGA Championship at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Missouri. Picture: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Tigers Woods declared Patrick Reed was "bleeding red, white and blue" after selecting the divisive star ahead of locker room and fan favourite Rickie Fowler for the United States' Presidents Cup defence next month.

Higher ranked and with stronger Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup credentials than Fowler, Reed nevertheless has a reputation as a somewhat self-centred and disruptive figure.

Reed infamously refused to allow his estranged parents and Augusta natives onto the course when he won last year's Masters.

He also threw US captain Jim Furyk under the bus and clashed with Jordan Spieth at last year's Ryder Cup after being split up from his previously successful partnership with Spieth.

But Woods loves competitors and there's few better than Reed - dubbed Captain America for his Ryder Cup heroics - including a 3-0 record in singles.

"He has an amazingly solid record in the Presidents Cup," Woods said..

"So this is a person that is as fiery as they come and he's bleeding red, white, and blue and he will do anything to get points for you - and that's what we want...

"He's going to give you absolutely everything he has, and that's admirable, and the guys are looking forward to embracing him and having him be a part of this team."

Reed promised Woods that his teammates could rely on him once again after earning one of four captain's picks on Friday.

"I live for events like the President's Cup and Ryder Cup," he said.

"I enjoy every minute of the competition, the fans and playing for our country

"It means so much to me to be a part of this team, and I'm going to do everything I can to help the USA bring home the Presidents Cup."

Woods admitted it was a wrench to overlook Fowler, widely considered the best player yet to win a major championship.

"That was a tough phone call," he said.

"Rickie's a good friend of mine and I've known him for a long time.

"Kept it short and quick. No reason to make it a lengthy conversation."

Fowler could yet earn a late reprieve with world No.1 Brooks Koepka in significant doubt as he battles a knee injury that could prevent him from teeing up against the Internationals at Royal Melbourne from December 12-15.


AAP