As I watched America beat the jabbering slime out of Europe this weekend at the stunning Hazeltine Golf course in Minnesota I wasn’t too upset (I’d bet on America to win). The quality of golf was some of the best in recent Ryder Cup history. The course set up promised for many Birdies and some modern day verbal abuse from an emotional American crowd was an interesting addition.
An American victory seemed to be on the cards almost from the off. Team USA won the Friday morning session 4-0. This left Europe in a very sticky position, leaving most commentators to hark back the ‘Miracle at Medinah’ four years ago. America had learned from their mistakes in 2012 where Europe staged the greatest sporting comebacks of all time. They would not sit back and watch this year. The Americans went on to trounce Europe 17-11 this year.
Europe's failing was selecting too many rookies, 6 in total and relying too heavily on Lee Westwood to deliver. Also, Danny Willet’s underperformance should not be glossed over, the Masters Champion should not be losing all three of his matches. Especially losing 5&4 in his singles match.
Two European rookies who proved their worth were Thomas Pieters and Rafa Cabrera-Bello, but this was still not enough to overcome Patrick Reed, Jordan Spieth and Phil Mickelson. The Mickelson vs Garcia match was a particular highlight on the final day. Mickelson shooting 10 birdies and Garcia making 9. The match finished as a half. Which, most would agree is a just result for two titans of the Ryder Cup.
America will hope that this victory can reverse the tide of the past decade. Europe has to do some rebuilding, but all hope is certainly not lost. European Captain Darren Clarke took a risk selecting so many rookies and, to no ones surprise it didn’t pay off. Whilst most of the rookies will be going to Paris in 2018 for the next Ryder Cup, Darren Clarke will not. The main contenders for next European captain are Thomas Bjorn, Padraig Harrington and Miguel Angel Jimenez. On the other side of the pond, most Americans would like to see either Tiger Woods or Jim Furyk take on the job.
Now we’ll all wait in eager anticipation for the 42nd Ryder Cup at Le Golf National and hope Europe can take it back.