Dustin Johnson quits to 'seek professional help for personal challenges' and is likely to miss Ryder Cup

Posted: August 4, 2014 at 3:49 am

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Clearly, the statement leaves more questions than answers, with the Europe captain, Paul McGinley, saying it would simply lead to a lot of speculation and rumours.

Things will be said that are not true, McGinley said on Sky Sports. Its much better for everyone if there is clarity. If something has gone wrong and he has been misbehaving, lets put it out on the table and get it dealt with and move forward.

Watson was rather more political in his statement. We will certainly miss Dustin Johnson at Gleneagles, and we wish him the best, he said. As one of the longest hitters in the game with an undefeated record at Medinah in 2012, he has clearly been an asset for the US team.

It is fair to say Johnson has something of a chequered past. He was arrested as a 17-year-old for buying bullets that were later used in a gang murder and was in trouble again in 2009 this time as a member of the PGA Tour for driving under the influence. Johnson is seen an unfulfilled talent in the golfing community, with his penchant for the party scene often blamed.

His long-time coach, Butch Harmon, handed him an ultimatum in 2011.

We had a come-to-Jesus conversation about getting his personal life in order, Harmon said. I was very blunt. I told him he needs to figure out who he is and how committed he is to utilising his talent. And that when hes playing tournaments he needs to eliminate some of the, shall we say, extra-curricular activities. Hes a fun-loving guy, I realise that. But theres a time to play and a time to work.

In May 2012, Johnsons agent, David Winkle, insisted his client had not been serving a drugs suspension from the PGA Tour when he spent three months out of the game.

For Watson, the loss could be significant, particularly if the conditions are wet and the emphasis is on distance. Johnson finished 12th at the Open two weeks ago and fourth in Junes US Open.

On Monday, he pulled out of this weeks WGC Bridgestone Invitational citing personal reasons, which many took to mean he wanted to spend time with his fiance, Paulina Gretzky, the daughter of ice hockey legend Wayne.

Now we know the reasons were more serious. It could cost Johnson millions as he was in fourth place in the FedEx Cup, which boasts a 6.7million prize for the winner.

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Dustin Johnson quits to 'seek professional help for personal challenges' and is likely to miss Ryder Cup

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August 4th, 2014 at 3:49 am

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