Ryder Cup 2012: Pairings, Tee Times and Predictions for Finale at Medinah
It all comes down to this. After two days of dominance by the United States, the 2012 Ryder Cup comes to a close on Sunday afternoon with the American squad just 4.5 points away from capturing the crown for the first time since 2008.
Europe was able to keep hope alive thanks to the heroics of Ian Poulter, who was able to birdie his last five holes on Saturday to put the score at 10-6 heading into Sunday's individual matchups.
The Americans have to feel good about their chances. According to Tom Fordyce of BBC Sports, the U.S. has never lost a Ryder Cup after holding at least a two-point advantage heading into the final day.
To get you prepared for the madness at Medinah Country Club, here is a look at the head-to-head pairings for Sunday, tee times and what to expect when the action gets underway.
Pairings and tee times courtesy of RyderCup.com. Times listed in ET.
|Luke Donald vs. Bubba Watson||12:03 p.m.|
|Webb SImpson vs. Ian Poulter||12:14 p.m.|
|Keegan Bradley vs. Rory McIlroy||12:25 p.m.|
|Phil Mickelson vs. Justin Rose||12:36 p.m.|
|Paul Lawrie vs. Brandt Snedeker||12:47 p.m.|
|Dustin Johnson vs. Nicolas Colsaerts||12:58 p.m.|
|Zach Johnson vs. Graeme McDowell||1:09 p.m.|
|Jim Furyk vs. Sergio Garcia||1:20 p.m.|
|Jason Dufner vs. Peter Hanson||1:31 p.m.|
|Matt Kuchar vs. Lee Westwood||1:42 p.m.|
|Steve Stricker vs. Martin Kaymer||1:53 p.m.|
|Tiger Woods vs. Francesco Molinari||2:04 p.m.|
Biggest Matchup: Keegan Bradley vs. Rory McIlroy
It's not often that the biggest matchup is also the best matchup, but that is exactly what we have when Bradley and McIlroy tee it up against each other on Sunday afternoon.
Bradley has been on fire this weekend, going 3-0 in his first Ryder Cup and really being the star of the American team. His work with Phil Mickelson has been spectacular to watch, particularly when you realize that they were matched up with Lee Westwood and Luke Donald, who are the No. 2 and 3 players in the world, on Saturday.
McIlroy is the most talented player on the PGA Tour, though that doesn't always translate to success in the Ryder Cup format. He has had issues this weekend, struggling to find any consistency off the tee and on the greens.
This match will swing the competition one way or the other.
Which Match Are You Most Looking Forward To?
It will be interesting to see what the European team is able to do right out of the gate. Captain Jose Maria Olazabal knows that in order for them to have a chance they need to mount a serious comeback right away, which is why he put his best players out early.
Davis Love III was clearly not willing to take any chances, matching Olazabal's strategy by going with his hottest hands early and saving Jim Furyk, Matt Kuchar and Tiger Woods for later on.
Ultimately, the four-point margin will be too great for the Europeans to overcome. So many things would have to fall into place for them, while the American team would have to fold like a cheap tent.
Given the way that Bradley, Mickelson and Watson have been playing, that seems like an incredibly long shot.
USA wins 16-12
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