Ryder Cup Offers Three Formats

By Golf Channel NewsroomSeptember 15, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 Ryder CupThe Ryder Cup is comprised of three different competitions ' fourballs, foursomes and singles.
  • Fourballs are commonly called better ball, or the grammatically incorrect best ball. Each player plays his own ball throughout the hole and the team chooses the man with the best score. That score then becomes the team score for the hole.
  • Foursomes are commonly called alternate shot. In this competition, four players, two from each side, play just two balls, one per team. The two players from a team alternate hitting the shots until the ball is holed or conceded. One player tees off on the even holes, the other tees off on the odd holes.
    The host team, the Americans, decide which format is played first and which format second. Foursomes and fourballs are played exclusively the first two days. Europe has traditionally been strong in the team competition, particularly the foursomes (alternate shot).
  • 'Singles', the competition reserved for the final day, is one-on-one match play. One man from each side plays his opponent heads-up. Scoring is done on a per-hole basis, as it is in all the competitions. It makes no difference what is the final aggregate score. When one player or side wins a hole, they go to the next. America has traditionally been the strongest in the singles.
    A player or side wins when he/they are up more than there are holes left to play. For example, 3 and 2 means that team is up three holes with only two left to play ' a closeout. A final score of 1-up means the winner got to the 18th hole and won if it was tied, or held the lead until the hole was finished. If a player was 1-up when the 18th began and he won the hole, he wins the match 2-up.
    Unlike some match-play competitions, there is no sudden death -- or extra holes. If the match is tied after 18 holes it is called a Half. Each side is awarded a half-point. A win is worth one point. A loss is worth zero points. It takes 14 1/2 points to win the Ryder Cup. The Europeans, as defending champions, can retain the cup with a 14-14 tie.

    Four matches are played in the morning and four in the afternoon the first two days, with the singles played the third day. Captains selections for the two-man teams are made by a blind draw before the matches begin ' the U.S. captain submits the names of four two-man teams, in the order they will play. The European captain does the same, and then it is revealed which players will play which. This is done twice a day, morning and afternoon, prior to that sessions matches.
    Americas team is selected from a points list over almost a two-year period - since the previous Ryder Cup. Points are doubled the second year. Points are awarded for top-10 finishers in PGA Tour-sanctioned events, with greater points added for major championships.
    The European competition is from a pair of points systems based on the Order of Merit, the European money list, as well as the Official World Golf Ranking.
    Both captains are also given two captain's pick to use at their discrection and round out their respective team of 12.
    Related Links:
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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

    Masters victory

    Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

    Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

    Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative

    Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ

    Green jacket tour

    Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

    Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

    Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket

    Man of the people

    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

    Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

    Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief

    Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together

    Ace at 17th at Sawgrass

    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

    Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018

    Departure from TaylorMade

    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade

    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

    Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'

    Victory at Valderrama

    Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
    Getty Images

    Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

    Well, this is a one new one.

    According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

    “No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

    Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

    “If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

    The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

    “I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

    The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

    Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

    Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.