Dustin Johnson Says Picking Brother Austin as His Caddie Was About 'Spending the Time' with Him
While some people may hate when their younger siblings follow in their footsteps, that's so not the case with Dustin Johnson and his brother-turned-caddie Austin Johnson.
The 36-year-old, who is currently the No. 1 ranked golfer in the world, has had his younger brother Austin on the green with him since 2013, and the pair has been extremely successful as a duo.
In a new interview with ESPN, Dustin discussed the experience of working with his younger brother, 33, and soaking up the extra time together.
The 2020 Masters champion explained that Austin was a good golfer as a kid but never followed through with the sport, instead turning his focus to basketball.
When Dustin's regular caddie, Bobby Brown, couldn't make it to the Perth International tournament in Australia, Austin assumed the role and has stayed by his brother's side ever since.
"He didn't have any experience caddying, but he played golf as a junior and he was a good player," Dustin said in the interview. "He had been around the game enough to know the basics, but for me, it was more about I just enjoyed him being on the bag."
"I enjoyed spending the time with him. You spend a lot of time with your caddie on the golf course, traveling, always practicing. So, to be able to enjoy that time was huge for me," Dustin continued. "He enjoyed it, too, and obviously, we've had a lot of success."
According to ESPN, Dustin has faced criticism for picking a caddie with less experience in the sport.
"A full-time caddie may see that as disrespect because they do hone their skills and work hard and put in the time," said Allen Terrell, the director of coaching at the Dustin Johnson School of Golf in Myrtle Beach. "For him to go with someone with no experience, I can see where that may appear like not appreciating a caddie's skill set. So they're going to be pissed about that and speak up about it. Who wouldn't want that bag? Some of that is envy."
Austin, however, said he feels like he's grown alongside Dustin.
"I think one of the big things was that I started with him later in his career," Austin told ESPN. "Had we started his rookie year, I think we might've butted heads a lot more, or had a tendency to argue a little bit. But now that we've both matured more, and he's had a lot of experience out there, it kind of helped bring me along a lot."
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During Austin's caddying career with Dustin, the two have won 17 times on the PGA Tour, including two majors, according to ESPN.
The golfer previously spoke to PEOPLE about having Austin as a caddie, sharing that the experience has been "incredible."
"You spend so much time with your caddie and traveling, going to all these wonderful places, but to just get to experience all this with my brother has been incredible," he said.