“It’s not over yet”: Europe’s golfers have to hope for a miracle

“It’s not over yet”
Europe’s golfers must hope for a miracle

At the Ryder Cup, the best golfers in Europe and the USA fight as a team for the prestigious victory for their continent. Defending champion Europe has fallen far behind in this year’s edition. The memory of a miracle gives rise to faint hope. But that alone will not be enough.

The US golfers are on the verge of a clear triumph at the 43rd Ryder Cup. The European team needs the great “miracle of Whistling Straits” on the day of the final to be able to defend the title against the favored US stars. After two days, the team of captain Padraig Harrington is clearly behind the United States with 5:11 in the prestigious continental comparison on the Whistling Straits Golf Course in the US state of Wisconsin.

“It’s not over yet. We still have to go out and everyone has to play well. We still need three and a half points,” said American No. 2 Dustin Johnson. “It is of course disappointing that I have not yet been able to contribute a point for the team,” said the hapless Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy. “Hopefully we can get up again and make her sweat tomorrow afternoon.”

On Saturday morning (local time) the US stars won three of the four team duels with another gala performance in front of around 40,000 enthusiastic fans on the spectacular golf course on the shores of Lake Michigan and increased their lead to 9: 3. The four afternoon matches ended 2-2. On Sunday, US captain Steve Stricker’s team only needed 3.5 points from the final twelve individual matches to recapture the Ryder Cup. The Europeans, on the other hand, still need nine points to defend their title. With a 14:14 the team from Europe would be allowed to keep the trophy.

Remembering the “Miracle of Medinah”

This means that the starting position for the Europeans before the final day is a little worse than nine years ago at the Ryder Cup in Medinah. In 2012 they were apparently hopelessly behind the twelve individual matches with 6:10. But on the last day the Europeans surpassed themselves. In the end, Germany’s golf star Martin Kaymer made the “Miracle of Medinah” perfect with his winning putt to a 14.5: 13.5 success.

But the US stars do not want to let it get that far. For the Americans, Dustin Johnson was the best point collector on the first two days. The world number two won all four games in which he was used. The European selection was unable to start the big race to catch up in the first four team duels on Saturday morning. Captain Harrington renounced his hapless star McIlroy that morning. The Northern Irishman was not nominated for a session for the first time in his Ryder Cup career after the four-time major winner lost both games on the opening day. In the afternoon McIlroy was there again, but suffered another defeat with his partner Ian Poulter.

For the Europeans, only the Spanish duo Jon Rahm / Sergio Garcia could really convince on the first two days, winning their three games together. With the win on Saturday morning against Brooks Koepka and Daniel Berger, Garcia had already made history: It was the 24th match win for the 41-year-old in his tenth Ryder Cup participation. With the further success in the afternoon against Koepka and Jordan Spieth Garcia extended his record to 25 wins. No other player has won more victories in the history of the competition. In addition, the Spaniard improved his own point record to 28.5.

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