Brooks Koepka is out of the Presidents Cup; Rickie Fowler is in.
Koepka, ranked No. 1 in the world, announced on Wednesday that he has been forced to withdraw from the 2019 competition due to a knee injury. U.S. Team Playing Captain Tiger Woods used the additional selection afforded to him by Koepka’s withdrawal to select Fowler.
“Today, I am announcing my withdrawal from the U.S. Presidents Cup Team because of my knee injury,” Koepka said in a statement. ” I notified Captain Tiger Woods that despite constant medical care and rehab, I am not able to play golf at this time. I consider it to be a high honor to be part of the 2019 team and I regret not being able to compete.
“Since my injury in Korea, I have been in constant contact with Tiger and assured him that I was making every effort to be 100 percent in time for the Presidents Cup in Australia. However, I need more time to heal. I’m sorry I won’t be able to represent the Red, White and Blue this time around and I wish my teammates nothing but the best as they work to retain the Presidents Cup for the USA.”
Koepka qualified as the No. 1-ranked player for the U.S. Presidents Cup Team in the points standing. December’s event would have been Koepka’s second Presidents Cup appearance after making his debut in 2017 and compiling a 2-2-0 record.
“Brooks and I talked, and he’s disappointed that he won’t be able to compete,” Woods said. “I told him to get well soon, and that we’re sorry he won’t be with us in Australia. He would clearly be an asset both on the course and in the team room.”
Fowler will now play for the third time on the U.S. Team following a strong showing in 2017 at Liberty National where he was undefeated with a 3-0-1 record.
“Rickie has played on a couple Presidents Cup teams, was someone seriously considered for a pick and is well respected and liked by his teammates,” Woods said. “I know he’s going to do a great job for us. We’re all excited about this year’s event. The course is outstanding, the fans will be loud and we’re playing against great competitors. We’re ready to go.”
“When I heard Brooks wasn’t going to be ready to play, I was bummed for him and the team,” Fowler said. “Then I got a call from both Brooks and Tiger. I was humbled and excited to be given the chance. These team events have been some of the most memorable weeks of my career.
“To be picked by Tiger to compete with him and the rest of the team is very special. It is impossible to replace the world’s No. 1, but I can assure my teammates and American golf fans that I will be prepared and ready to do my part to bring home the Presidents Cup.”
The Presidents Cup will return to Melbourne, Australia and The Royal Melbourne Golf Club for the third time, December 9-15.