2012 Ryder Cup Upon Further Review: Who Was the Real Winner?
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Davis Love III's Saturday night chat with his team must have included a chalk talk to implement the prevent defense.
If anyone is waking up Monday and wondering how the United States fumbled a 10-6 lead on Sunday, they may need to go under the hood of one of Ian Poulter's Ferraris and count the number of spark plugs—twelve. They might find a cruel reminder that when it comes to team golf, the Americans don't get the chutzpa of playing for - cymbal crash - drum roll - each other.
Sunday was reminder that if a team needs a field goal and a safety to win the game, it might be a good idea to go for the touchdown, play offense and don't worry about the extra point.
Davis Love III's team had all the momentum Saturday at lunch. The team was humming and the crowd was cheering.
And, that's when it happened. Lunch. Ian Poulter had a Euro Pride Sandwich which ignited the team in galvanized fashion that would have made Ben Crenshaw proud.
And Love III iced his best team that had already given the U.S. three points. He said (metaphorically), "Phil and Keegan, why don't you guys go watch some football, take a load off and chill." Love III iced the kicker. And, just when it looked more bleak than a Dickens novel for the Euros, the Union Jack squad was lit.
Did anyone see Poulter's high beams for eyes? He rolled in five birdies in as many holes. Poulter and Mcllroy snagged that final point in a one-up win over Zach Johnson and Jason Dufner.
Who was the hero of the 2012 Ryder Cup?
And, what makes it more impressive, the Euros Hail Mary Sunday was on American soil. Well, kind of. There really is not a European team, geographically speaking—golf is a melting pot. Huh? Yes, Luke Donald drove home to his house north of Chicago after winning the cup.
He went to Northwestern, has a home in Florida, but he was born in England. As Associated Press writer Doug Ferguson reported earlier in the week, "Eight of the Europeans have joint membership on the PGA Tour, and all eight have homes in Florida." Whether the Florida homes are for tax or climate purposes is really a non-issue.
The other tipping point for the event came Saturday night when the pairings for Sunday were announced. It might have been an aha moment when Jim Furyk was scheduled to face off Sergio Garcia—the same match turned Brookline on its axis back in 1999.
Has anyone seen this movie before? Life and golf are cyclical.
Really, despite the upset after a large lead, the real winner was the event's drama. The drama for the final matches and missed putts was riveting. Some fans could not keep up with the ever-changing leaderboard.
Of course, the real winner was golf. Team golf and the Ryder Cup is alive and well. Golf clap for everyone.
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