Ryder Cup 2018 – 20
The United States entered the 2018 Ryder Cup as defending champions and headed to the Albatros Course in France to face a determined and talented European team. It was only the second time the Ryder Cup was held in Continental Europe, the other time being held in Spain 21 years prior.
Team USA got off to a fast start in the fourball matches on opening day with the team of Rickie Fowler and Dustin Johnson taking down Thorbjorn Olesen and Rory McIlroy by a 4 and 2 mark. Just as it appeared that Europe would earn their first point, Tony Finau and Brooks Koepka finished strong to oust Justin Rose and John Rahm. A one-up victory by Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth gave the USA a 3-0 lead. Europe salvaged a point as Francesco Molinari and Tommy Fleetwood came back to defeat Patrick Reed and Tiger Woods.
As hot as Team USA was in the morning, Europe was even hotter in the afternoon. Sergio Garcia and Alex Noren easily disposed of Bryson DeChambeau and Phil Mickelson, 5 and 4. Molinari and Fleetwood won their second point of the day taking down Thomas and Spieth. Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson had no answers against McIlroy and Ian Pouter. Europe came away with a clean sweep and 5-3 lead after day one.
USA continued to struggle in France in day two fourballs earning their only point with Spieth and Thomas defeating Rahm and Poulter 2 and 1. Although ahead by an 8-4 margin, Europe stayed focused and determined.
Needing to win the afternoon matches for a decent shot in singles, Team USA managed just a 2-2 draw. The team of Spieth and Thomas defeated Poulter and McIlroy. Woods and DeChambeau got buried 5 and 4 by Molinari and Fleetwood. Rose and Stenson earned the other point for Team Europe, while Simpson and Watson defeated Noren and Garcia to make the score 10-6 after day two.
Frontloading the lineup for Sunday’s singles, the United States cut into the lead 11.5 to 9.5 over the first five matches. Team Europe got on a roll from there, taking the next five points to lead 16.5 to 9.5 That was more than enough to secure the cup, as Team Europe needed only 14.5 to win. The final two matches were all-square making the final tally, 17.5 to 10.5 in favor of Europe.
Looking to rebound from their debacle in 2018, the 43rd Ryder Cup matches will take place from September 25 to 27, 2020 on USA soil. The venue is Whistling Straits in Haven, Wisconsin. Steve Stricker will captain Team USA with Jim Furyk as a vice-captain. Padraig Harrington will lead Team Europe with Robert Karlsson as a vice-captain.
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