Golf star Willett's family abused at Ryder Cup

European Ryder Cup 2016 team member, Danny Willett
European Ryder Cup 2016 team member, Danny Willett

Sheffield born U.S Masters golf champion, Danny Willett, has claimed his parents and wife were targeted by rowdy Ryder Cup fans.

Danny, 29, now living in Rotherham, was picked out for abuse at the Hazeltine national golf club after his brother wrote a scathing article criticising American crowds.
Pete Willett referred to the home support as a "braying mob of imbeciles" and the 'angry, unwashed, Make America Great Again swarm' ahead of the competition, which forced Danny to issue an apology.
However, after being subjected to boos and heckles throughout his three days on the Minnesota course, Danny later tweeted to say older brother Pete "was, in fact, correct" after claiming some fans "don't know when to call it a day".
His first experience of Ryder Cup action has been soured, not just because he lost all three of his matches, but by the constant stream of abuse he says was directed at him and even his family.

A small minority of American spectators were heard by Danny shouting taunts and abusive language towards his wife, Nicole and parents, Steve and Elisabet.

He said: "You've got 150-200,000 fans there that love watching golf. Unfortunately you've got the odd one or two that don't actually go there to watch the golf, which is a shame."

"I don't think you should be walking around playing golf while people are saying things to your parents and saying things to your wife. I don't think that's our sport, that's not what we play for, that's not what we do.

"Unfortunately that happened and unfortunately it put a little bit of a downer on what was supposed to be my first really good experience of the Ryder Cup."
Willett raised smiles at the post-tournament press conference when he summed up his debut experience in blunt terms.
"S***", he said. "Being honest. Sorry, would you like me to elaborate? Really s***."
But now he admits he could have chosen his words more carefully,

He said: "It's difficult when you have a press conference straight afterwards, the emotion's running high. It has sunk in a bit more now.

"I think people realise what was said was reflecting on a massively tiny proportion of people that went there. That's just how it is, unfortunately.

"When you're walking round a golf event week to week, everyone's fantastic. You pitch up and play a normal golf event anywhere in the world and the fans are great."