News All Articles
When Matt met Billy

When Matt met Billy

Matt Fitzpatrick's victory at the 2022 U.S. Open Championship was not just the story of one player’s journey from U.S. Amateur champion to Major winner.

Matt Fitzpatrick and Billy Foster

It also saw caddie Billy Foster win his first Major Championship after 40 years as one of the most recognisable bagmen on the DP World Tour.

The Englishman first rose to prominence caddying for the late, great Seve Ballesteros but since then has worked for Thomas Bjørn, Darren Clarke and Tiger Woods, amongst others.

With players of that calibre, it is no surprise he came close in plenty of Major Championships but it was not until Fitzpatrick parred the last and saw Will Zalatoris' birdie putt slide by on the 18th at The Country Club, Brookline that he could taste victory in one of golf's big four.

There were memorable scenes when it was confirmed that Fitzpatrick had won, with Foster initially appearing to be more emotional than his fellow Yorkshireman. After kissing the 18th flag, Foster explained just what it meant to him to be a Major Championship-winning caddie.

Billy and Seve

"It's unbelievably emotional, it's 40 years caddying and I've been very fortunate," he said. "I've had a gorilla on my back, never mind a monkey. It means a lot. Westy (Lee Westwood) and Darren Clarke and Seve all had their chances, and Thomas Bjørn at Sandwich (2003 Open Championship). I thought about it every day for six months. It broke my heart.

“But this has put a lot of bad memories to bed, it means everything to me. I always thought he was good enough to win a Major. This week he has played unbelievable golf and and not putted his best, which says it all.”

Since teaming up in 2018, Fitzpatrick and Foster have won a Rolex Series title at the 2020 DP World Tour Championship, Dubai and at one of the world's great layouts at the 2021 Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters at Real Club Valderrama.

Now the duo have a Major win to celebrate and 27-year-old Fitzpatrick was clearly delighted for Foster.

Billy Foster

"It means the world to Billy," he said. "I can't tell you how much it means to Billy. It's unbelievable. I know it's something he's wanted for a long, long, long time. To do it today is incredible.

"We ended up working together. I was kind of in between caddies. He just split up with Lee, and just happened to work out.

"It's so funny. He kept telling me the first time on the job, I'll just do 25 weeks and maybe get a fill-in for the others. I think he's had about two weeks off in four years.

"He played a massive part, he was so calm the whole day and I know how much it means to him. It means even more to him probably than me given he's been around so long.

Fitz and Billy

"I know he had a big monkey on his back, it was eating away at him and to get it done for myself but for him as well is great."

The esteem in which Foster is held by Fitzpatrick and his camp is probably best shown by Fitzpatrick's father Russell, who when asked about his son's achievement, instantly pivoted to his caddie.

"It's not just for Matt, really," he said. "I feel so happy for Billy - 40 years out there caddying, always wanted to win a Major Championship, he's got one and nobody deserves it better. He's the best in the business and we're lucky to have him."

Read next