Crowds swarmed both Mickelson and Koepka on their way to the green of the final hole at the PGA Championship.
PGA Of America Apologises To Mickelson And Koepka For Final Hole Chaos
PGA of America Chief Executive Seth Waugh has apologised to Phil Mickelson and Brooks Koepka for the chaos on the final hole of the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island, after fans surrounded the two players on their way to the green.
Supporters gathered around the playing partners after Mickelson’s approach shot to the 18th, with both players needing assistance from security guards to force their way through the crowds.
Seth Waugh said in a statement: “While we welcome enthusiastic fan engagement, we regret that a moment of high elation and pent-up emotion by spectators on the 18th hole during the conclusion of yesterday’s historic PGA Championship briefly overwhelmed security and made two players and their caddies feel vulnerable.
“We always put player safety at the top of our list and are grateful that order was restored.
“I have spoken to both players and apologised on behalf of the association.”
Fans returned to the PGA Championship to watch Phil Mickelson become the oldest ever Major champion at 50-years-old, after they missed out last year at TPC Harding Park due to the pandemic.
For eventual winner Mickelson, the crowds gathering around him felt “slightly unnerving, but exceptionally awesome.”
However, Koepka didn’t share the same sentiment.
“It would have been cool if I didn’t have a knee injury and got dinged a few times in the knee in that crowd because no one really gave a s***,” said Koepka.
“It’s cool for Phil, but getting dinged a few times isn’t exactly my idea of fun.
“I don’t think anybody really understands until actually you’re coming out of surgery how … I mean, even when I was doing rehab and there’s five people kind of standing by your knee, you get a little skittish.”
The joint-runner up at Kiawah Island had knee surgery in March following ligament damage, and stated after the tournament that he will take time off in preparation for the US Open next month.