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Sunday, October 24, 2021

US seeks solutions to why Europe retains profitable Ryder Cup

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The Individuals carry the kind of credentials that make them favorites in nearly each Ryder Cup, and this yr isn’t any totally different.

All however one among their gamers is among the many prime 20 on the planet — the lone exception is Ryder Cup rookie Scottie Scheffler at No. 21. Six of them are main champions. They’ve the FedEx Cup champion and the Olympic gold medalist on their aspect.


It simply hardly ever interprets into profitable the Ryder Cup, and solely Europe appears to have the reply.

A number of Individuals at the least tried to search out an evidence.

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“They simply play higher. It is actually easy,” Dustin Johnson mentioned Wednesday. “Whoever performs higher goes to win. I imply, it is not rocket science.”

Patrick Cantlay, whose ideas are likely to run a bit of deeper, took an extended view when looking for explanation why Europe has gained 9 of the final 12 instances within the Ryder Cup.

Cantlay has been taking part in gin rummy since he was a youngster and referred to some books he has learn on the sport, throwing in some analogies to the roulette wheel and flipping cash for good measure.

This wasn’t rocket science, both, however it was way more entertaining.

“If you happen to play sufficient gin arms, a 1 or 2% distinction in ability interprets to nearly an assured win over many, many, many arms of gin,” he mentioned. “However you would have an enormous distinction — perhaps a 60 to 40% ability stage distinction — and gin continues to be chancy sufficient to the place you would play 10 arms and lose six or seven of the arms than somebody a lot worse than you skill-wise.”

Golf is “chancy” in any format, and the Ryder Cup is performed as soon as each two years, at the least when it is not postponed by a pandemic.

“So would it not shock you if the U.S. went on the same run to what Europe has been on for the subsequent 20 years? Would not shock me,” Cantlay mentioned.

He then switched to roulette, with a principally 50-50 probability of profitable, skewed ever so barely to the home. It might hit crimson six instances in a row and nobody would blink. However take one other 50-50 gamble, equivalent to flipping a coin.

“If the quarter flips tails, heads, tails, heads, tails, heads, then you definately would assume one thing trippy was happening,” he mentioned.

Again to the Ryder Cup.

Cantlay identified variables such because the captains, gamers, golf programs and even the climate altering from one Ryder Cup to the subsequent one. After which he reached his conclusion.

“You are actually going to ask a query like that and assume you’re going to get the proper reply?” he mentioned with a smile. “I don’t have the solutions to that. That is my first one.”

Possibly that counts as a slight edge for the Individuals. That is their youngest group ever, with a median age of 29. Solely three of their 12 gamers have competed in a couple of Ryder Cup.

“It’s puzzling how I feel we have misplaced rather a lot within the handful of years wanting again,” British Open champion Collin Morikawa mentioned. “However that is the previous. We’re right here, and we’re in regards to the current, or hopefully what the longer term goes to be like. It is about this week, and hopefully we are able to flip that spherical and switch that tide in our favor for nevertheless a few years I can play this.”

Europe is all about group and its wealthy historical past. Captain Padraig Harrington started the week by giving every participant a quantity that represents their chronological place among the many 164 gamers from Europe who’ve competed within the matches.

After which he got down to win over a crowd that, due to the pandemic and journey restrictions, will probably be overwhelming cheering for the Stars and Stripes. The group colours Wednesday had been inexperienced and gold, identical to the Inexperienced Bay Packers, and he had his gamers put on foam Cheesehead hats once they walked onto the observe vary.

They obtained a standing ovation and extra cheers once they flung them into the gallery.

It was paying homage to 2004 at Oakland Hills, the place there was an settlement to not signal autographs throughout observe. However the Europeans signed every thing, endearing themselves to the group, or perhaps simply taking away a number of the sting in a file margin of victory.

“A little bit of enjoyable and we bought a pleasant reception with it,” Harrington mentioned. “That is type of what you need on the observe days. Clearly, enterprise begins on Friday. However for the time being, the gamers are having fun with it and having an excellent time with it.”

Europe has the expertise of Lee Westwood and Sergio Garcia — 21 Ryder Cup appearances between them — and solely three rookies. All of them speak about inspiration from seeing European greats earlier than them, within the room as gamers and assistant captains, or in images on the wall. They speak about profitable and nothing extra.

The Individuals are on residence soil, and whereas current dominance belongs to Europe, the house group has gained six of the final seven.

Johnson is essentially the most veteran member — and the oldest at 37 — of the U.S. group. His position hasn’t modified in his view (“Win as many matches as I can,” he mentioned). The hope is that such a younger group might sign a contemporary begin.


“The groups I’ve been on the previous, I really feel like we’ve had tons of expertise and it hasn’t labored out so properly,” Johnson mentioned. “We’ve bought some actually gifted gamers, younger guys that perhaps don’t have all of the recollections of shedding all these Ryder Cups. Possibly that is the recipe.”

If not, they will should hold looking for what Ian Poulter described because the “magic sauce” Europe has managed to {cook} up.

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