Former Masters champion Patrick Reed is the latest high-profile player to reject talk of playing the Ryder Cup behind closed doors.
A report in today’s edition of The Guardian claims that the coronavirus-enforced postponement of this year’s match is imminent. It now looks increasingly likely that it will take place some time in 2021.
Given the choice between that and playing the match at Whistling Straits without supporters, American talisman Reed is in no doubt as to which is the best of two bad scenarios.
“You want to have that banter back and forth with the crowds,” said Reed, who famously ‘shushed’ European supporters at Gleneagles on his debut in 2014.
“If you're a home team, you basically want that 12th man. If you're the away team, you're expecting to kind of going into a hostile environment.
“Without fans, it just seems like it would be hard for everyone to kind of get up and show the emotion that you normally would whenever you have fans there.”
Adding that postponing the match would be “disappointing”, Reed said: “You always look forward to being able to play and represent your country, especially in the Ryder Cup.
“It's just kind of one of those things that with the unfortunate times and the scary times we're going through right now that the PGA and both teams, they need to make the best decision, not just what's best for the people and the players but also the best thing for the history of the tournament.
“I would prefer them to push it back to where we can have fans than to go out and play without fans.”