US Team Captain Corey Pavin has finally done what was unthinkable a year ago; making Tiger Woods irrelevant at a major golf event.
Tiger has been buried in Pavin’s lineup for Monday’s final run for the trophy. After Sunday, the US Team trailed in the Ryder Cup, 9 1/2 to 6 1/2. Leaving Team Europe needing only five points to pull off the victory.
Even Team Europe appeared surprised to see Tiger scheduled for match 8 on Monday instead of teeing off first, knowing that Tiger still holds the world No. 1 ranking.
Tiger may hold the world No.1 ranking, but it is based on history and not current events. Woods is simply not the same caliber of golfer he used to be. He may return to form someday, but this has proven to be a year to forget for Tiger.
Sure, Tiger has won some matches in team play at the Celtic Manor (two), but those were mainly due to his partner Steve Stricker’s excellent play, not his own.
Tiger is not the only top ranked player struggling in Wales. Phil Mickelson has set a record for most career losses of any American in Ryder Cup play. Mickelson appears to be going through the motions and looks disinterested as he struggles to finish the Ryder Cup event.
If we have learned anything so far at this year’s Ryder Cup, it’s that Lee Westwood (Europe) and Steve Stricker (USA) are the two best players participating in this event.