Ryder Cup

Johnson back in fiancee's photo album, maybe heart too

2018-09-27 17:11
Dustin Johnson
Dustin Johnson (AP)

Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines - US Ryder Cup star Dustin Johnson used his photography skills to work his way back into fiancee Paulina Gretzky's photo collection, and maybe her heart, after she dumped all traces of him from her Instagram account.

Now, the 34-year-old American, who overtook England's Justin Rose to reclaim golf's world No 1 ranking, will attempt to work his shotmaking magic for trophy-holders United States against Europe as the Ryder Cup begins Friday at France's Le Golf National.

Asked if he felt he had inflicted a psychological blow by dethroning his rival from the ranking summit, Johnson replied: "Sure. I guess it depends on how you look at it. For me? Yeah, I like being one."

Model Gretzky, the 29-year-old daughter of Canadian ice hockey legend Wayne Gretzky and mother of two children with Johnson, was seen in public with him at a Ryder Cup function on Wednesday night for the first time since she erased him from her Instagram account earlier this month, sparking celebrity website reports of a breakup.

They were hand-in-hand at the Palace of Versailles for a special dinner and Johnson was with most players in taking photos of their partners outside the palace.

"I've enjoyed the events we've had," Johnson said. "Last night was a really nice event at the Palace to get together with both teams. Had a really nice dinner. So that was a lot of fun."

Asked how many photos he took, Johnson replied: "No comment."

Earlier this month, after Gretzky's Instagram adjustment, Johnson tweeted his only statement so far on the situation.

"Every relationship goes through its ups and downs," he wrote. "But most importantly, we love each other very much and are committed to being a family."

Gretzky responded eight days later by posting a video clip with her in bed listening to the song "I'd Be Jealous Too" by Dustin Lynch. It went viral, its jealousy lyrics seen as a message to Johnson.

It was only confirmed Gretzky was in France when she was in an Instagram post with the Eiffel Tower in the background by Jena Sims, girlfriend of US team-mate and three-time major winner Brooks Koepka.

Johnson and Gretzky were engaged in August 2013 after seven months of dating and have two sons, 3-year-old Tatum and 1-year-old River.

On the course, 2016 US Open champion Johnson prepares for his fourth Ryder Cup appearance.

"We've got a very strong team," Johnson said of a lineup with 11 of the world's 17 top-ranked players. "I feel like it's going to be fairly close coming into Sunday and coming down to the last few matches. They're going to fight hard just like we are. It's going to be a great week for golf."

Johnson has won three PGA events this year and taken at least one title in each of his first 11 US tour seasons, a streak bettered only by Jack Nicklaus and US team-mate Tiger Woods.

Woods snapped a five-year win drought last weekend to cap a comeback season from spinal fusion surgery and claim his 80th career PGA victory, two shy of Sam Snead's all-time record.

That's just the sort of target Johnson was hoping Woods would become.

"I'm glad to see it. I want to beat him at his best and I feel like right now, he's starting to get back to where he's very good," Johnson said. "To see him get back there after quite a while off I think is very impressive.

"I'm glad he's on my team this week, too."

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Read more on:    ryder cup  |  dustin johnson  |  golf

 

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