In 1991, The Charleston News stated the following regarding the Ryder Cup: “The teams are playing for their countries, their families, their teammates, Uncle Sam, The Queen, Mom and Dad, the Fatherland and the legends of the leprechaun, all rolled into three days of golf.”
The Ryder Cup is not only known for its weekend of international competition between countries, but also for its format of various match play, a type of golf not normally played through the PGA.
Match play is a type of scoring in golf where each team can potentially earn one point for each hole that they score better than their opponent. Match play is played over an 18-hole golf course, and at the end of regulation, whichever team has won the most points wins the match and the point for his or her team.
Specifically, the Ryder Cup is made up of a total of 28 matches.
On Friday and Saturday, teams play as partners against partners from the opposing team, and Sunday consists of 12 singles matches with every member of both teams competing. For winning a match, the team receives one point, and for a tie, both teams receive half a point.
The 2014 Ryder Cup was hosted in Gleneagles Scotland and ran from Friday Sept. 26 until Sunday Sept. 28. The Ryder Cup is a three day international golf competition between Great Britain and the United States. The tournament is held every two years at alternating venues between Europe and the United States.
This year, team Europe walked away with the cup and a dominating victory, beating team USA 16.5 to 11.5 points, retaining the cup for the eighth time in the last ten tournaments.
Both teams consist of twelve players, and each team has their own system of deciding their lineup. Each team elects to bring captain’s picks as well as those making the qualifications.
This year, the European team was headed by Paul McGinley and the United States team was headed by Tom Watson. Infomation about the USA and European Ryder Cup Teams is pictured below.
Going into Sunday, the Europeans were leading the Americans 10-6, needing only 14 points to recapture the cup. The media questioned some decisions by team captain Watson after he decided to sit out Phil Mickelson, a definite team leader, for both matches on Saturday.
The Europeans did not waste any time and came out winning three early matches. Eventually, Europe was declared the winner after Jamie Donaldson (Europe) defeated Keegan Bradley (USA) five points up with four holes to play.
When asking some R-MC students their opinions on the 2014 Ryder Cup, they were optimistic, but at the same disappointed that USA could not pull out the win.
Senior Kyle Fuller, member of the men’s golf team, noted that while the Americans put up quite a fight in the singles, due to their play the first two days, it was “too little too late.”
However, Fuller said he is looking forward to a bright future and stated that the “American team is young and the experience from this Ryder Cup will serve them well in the future.”
Junior Olivia Bowling, a member of the women’s golf team, was also optimistic looking forward to the future.
“In the end, Europe woke up with something better. They played great, but I know the USA team can play better,” Bowling said.
The Ryder Cup will return in 2016 on American turf at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.
-Becca Ream ’16, Senior Sports Editor