European Report Cards

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 21, 2008, 4:00 pm
Ryder CupNick Faldos European team performed below expectations so his C grade is indicitive of that. The six-time major champion always did things his way, regardless of what anyone else thought, and perhaps that cost him in the long run. Without Colin Montgomerie and Darren Clarke and without Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Padraig Harrington winning a match, Europe had no chance. Here is how GolfChannel.com graded Faldo's team for the matches played at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.:
 

 

Padraig Harrington
Padraig Harrington

Its impossible to believe that the best player in golf over the past three months went winless in four matches. Without Colin Montgomerie and Darren Clarke, Harrington (0-3-1) was the one expected to step up and take the leadership role. It never happened.


 

 

 
Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia

Garcia (0-2-2) easily had the worst Ryder Cup in his career, going winless and gaining a total of just 1 point. And perhaps more shocking was his benching on Day 2 ' the first time he had sat out a session in his five Ryder Cup appearances. This not to mention his 5-and-4 loss to Kim in singles.


 

 

 
Lee Westwood
Lee Westwood

Got rattled early by Boo Weekley and just never showed form that hes had this whole year and in past Ryder Cups. Just unfathomable to think that the Englishman (0-2-2) could play in four matches and not win one of them.


 

 

 
Henrik Stenson
Henrik Stenson

Stenson (1-2-1) had a rather lackluster Ryder Cup, earning just 1 points. Lone bright spot was rallying in the Saturday foursomes match to edge Mickelson-Kim. Had a tough draw in Sunday singles, going up against crowd favorite Kenny Perry and losing 3 and 2.


 

 

 
Robert Karlsson
Robert Karlsson

Karlsson (1-1-2) came into the matches hot after a victory on the European Tour and remained that way. Drubbed Leonard in singles. His play in the afternoon fourball on Day 2 was exceptional, draining seven birdies in one 10-hole stretch.


 

 

 
Miguel Angel Jimenez
Miguel Angel Jimenez

Expected more from one of the few true veterans on the squad, who usually is a strong protagonist in this event. If Jimenez (0-2-1) had been playing better perhaps Faldo would have played him in four matches instead of only three.


 

 

 
Graeme McDowell
Graeme McDowell

A pleasant surprise for Faldo, the Ryder Cup rookie gained appreciation for the event from being an inside-the-ropes television reporter at the 2006 Cup. McDowell (2-1-1) paired with three different teammates in the first two days, then dropped Cink in singles.


 

 

 
Justin Rose
Justin Rose

Joins Poulter as the only two stars for Europe. The young, English duo was 2-1 together the first two days, then Rose (3-1-0) smoked Mickelson in the singles match that wasnt as close as the score indicated.


 

 

 
Soren Hansen
Soren Hansen

Hansen's (0-2-1)only real bright spot was in a Day 1 fourball match with Westwood where Team Europe made birdie on the 18th hole to squeak out a halve with Holmes and Weekley. Fought hard in singles match against Holmes but just didnt have the firepower.


 

 

 
Oliver Wilson
Oliver Wilson

Wilson's (1-1-0) grade really could be an incomplete because he was the only player on either squad that sat out the entire first day and only played in two total matches. The young, Cup rookie showed emotion though and could become more of a factor in the future.


 

 

 
Ian Poulter (captain's pick)
Ian Poulter

Poulter (4-1-0) ended up making Faldo look pretty smart as far as a captain's choice. He was the Euro team's emotional leader as well and the player making all the big putts to keep his team in the mix up until the outcome was decided.


 

 

 
Paul Casey (captain's pick)
Paul Casey

Casey (0-1-2) was one of Faldos two captain's picks and was unable to muster much of anything, gaining only two half points during the competition. His half point in the Sunday singles match was a gift from Mahan, who put his ball in the water on 18.


 

 
Related Links:
  • U.S. Report Cards
  • U.S. Team and Records
  • European Team and Records
  • Full Coverage - 37th Ryder Cup
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    Stock Watch: Up or down for FedExCup changes?

    By Ryan LavnerSeptember 18, 2018, 2:20 pm

    Each week on GolfChannel.com, we’ll examine which players’ stocks and trends are rising and falling in the world of golf.

    RISING

    Angela Stanford (+9%): In this era of youthful dominance, Justin Rose and now Stanford offer reminders that sometimes the long, winding journey is even more rewarding. It took Rose 20 years to reach world No. 1; for Stanford, she needed 76 major starts (and 15 years after a major playoff loss) before she finally became a Grand Slam winner, at age 40.

    Sang-Moon Bae (+6%): The next time you complain about losing your game after a few weeks away, remember that the two-time Tour winner shelved his clubs for TWO YEARS to fulfill his South Korean military obligations and then regained his card. That’s a heckuva achievement.

    FedExCup changes (+5%): Though the Tour Championship shouldn’t count as an official victory – come on, the playoffs leader has a TEN-SHOT head start over No. 26! – the strokes-based system is no doubt easier to follow than the various points fluctuations. RIP, Steve Sands’ whiteboard.

    Tyler McCumber (+3%): Maybe he’s on his way to challenging his famous father, who won 10 times on the PGA Tour. A three-time winner this season in Canada, McCumber clinched Mackenzie Tour Player of the Year honors and will be one to watch next year on the Web.

    Matthew Wolff (+2%): The reigning NCAA Freshman of the Year is now 2-for-2 this season, winning at both Pebble Beach and Olympia Fields with a 67.2 scoring average. He’s a primetime player.  


    FALLING

    Amy Olson (-1%): To win a major most need to have their heart broken at least once … but that ugly 72nd-hole double bogey could linger for longer than she probably hoped.  

    Lexi (-2%): As heartwarming as it was to watch Stanford snap her major-less drought, keep in mind that the best U.S. player – the 23-year-old Thompson – next April will be five years removed from her lone LPGA major title.

    Web final (-3%): Twenty-five Tour cards will be on the line this week at the season-ending Web.com Tour Championship, but here’s guessing you won’t even notice – for some reason, it conflicts with the big tour’s season finale. Why couldn’t this have been played last week, when the Tour was dark and the Web could get some much-needed exposure?

    Player of the Year debate (-5%): As much as the Tour might promote otherwise during its big-money conclusion, Justin Thomas said it best on Twitter: Majors trump all. It’s Brooks Koepka’s trophy this year.  

    Repairing damage (-6%): Golf’s governing bodies are confident that the new rules (out Jan. 1!) will speed up pace of play, but it’s hard to see how that’s possible when they now will allow players to tap down spike marks on the green. With $1 million and major titles on the line, you don’t think guys will spend an extra minute or two gardening?

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    FedExCup gets massive overhaul for next season

    By Rex HoggardSeptember 18, 2018, 2:05 pm

    ATLANTA – The PGA Tour unveiled more dramatic changes to the FedExCup and its playoffs on Tuesday, outlining a new model to determine the season-long champion and giving a boost to the circuit’s regular season.

    Starting next year when the Tour transitions from four post-season events to three, the FedExCup champion will be determined solely on the outcome at the Tour Championship, with players beginning the week at East Lake with a predetermined total based on their position on the points list.

    The No. 1 player on the post-season points list will begin the finale at 10 under par. The next four players will start at 8 under through 5 under, respectively, while Nos. 6-10 will begin the tournament at 4 under par with the total regressing by one stroke every five players with those ranked 26th through 30th starting at even par. The winner at East Lake will also claim the FedExCup.


    Current FedExCup standings

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    The new system removes the confusing calculations that have highlighted the finale since the season-long race began in 2007 and avoids awkward moments like last year when Xander Schauffele won the Tour Championship but Justin Thomas claimed the FedExCup.

    “As soon as the Tour Championship begins, any fan – no matter if they’ve followed the PGA Tour all season or are just tuning in for the final event – can immediately understand what’s going on and what’s at stake for every single player in the field,” commissioner Jay Monahan said in a statement.

    A player’s rank on the points list will be based on their play in the first two playoff events, The Northern Trust (125 players) and BMW Championship (70 players), and a victory at East Lake will count as an official triumph, although it remains to be seen if players will receive world ranking points at what is essentially a handicapped event.

    The Tour also announced the addition of a regular-season bonus pool called the Wyndham Rewards Top 10. The $10 million bonus pool will be based on regular-season performance, with the No. 1 player on the points list after the Wyndham Championship, the final regular-season event, earning $2 million.

    In addition to the format changes at the Tour Championship and regular-season race, Monahan announced that the FedExCup bonus pool will increase to $70 million, up from $35 million, with the champion receiving $15 million.

    “Now is the time to make these changes,” Monahan said, “and thanks to significant input in the process by our players, partners and fans, I believe we’re making exactly the right moves.”

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    Congressional to host 2031 PGA, 2036 Ryder Cup

    By Will GraySeptember 18, 2018, 12:51 pm

    The PGA of America announced that Congressional Country Club will host a number of its biggest events over the next two decades, including the 2031 PGA Championship and 2036 Ryder Cup.

    Located near Washington, D.C., Congressional hosted the 1976 PGA Championship when Dave Stockton won. But it's perhaps more well known in recent years as a USGA venue, having hosted three U.S. Opens including 1964 (Ken Venturi), 1997 (Ernie Els) and 2011 (Rory McIlroy). The course also hosted the Quicken Loans National seven times between 2007-2016.

    But the famed Blue Course will now become a PGA of America venue, and down the line will host the organization's two biggest events. Before that, Congressional will be home to the KPMG Women's PGA Championship in both 2022 and 2027, KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship in 2025 and 2033, the Junior PGA Championship in 2024 and the PGA Professional Championship in 2029.

    The announcement is a win for golf fans in the nation's capital, as the area lost its regular PGA Tour stop when the former Quicken Loans National ended this summer. Quicken Loans will sponsor the new Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit beginning in 2019.

    The Wanamaker Trophy will again be up for grabs at Congressional in 2031, adding to the long list of already confirmed future PGA Championship venues. The event now has only three open dates (2025, 2026, 2030) before 2032, but has already promised one of those available spots to Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa.

    The biggest prize may require the longest wait, as Congressional will host the Ryder Cup for the first time in 2036. It's the third time in less than a year that the PGA has locked in a future Ryder Cup site, having added Hazeltine (2028) earlier this year and Olympic (2032) in November. The 2020 matches will be held at Whistling Straits, while the 2024 matches will go to Bethpage Black.

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    Montana parents must pay to watch high school matches

    By Will GraySeptember 18, 2018, 12:22 pm

    Parents of Montana high school golfers can once again watch their kids during matches - for a price.

    Late last year the Montana State High School Association enacted a rule banning spectators from watching high school golf "except for certain locations." That led to an uproar from local parents, who pointed out that parents of athletes in other sports have no such troubles watching their kids in action.

    The MSHSA has amended the rule according to the Montana Sidney Herald, allowing spectators on the course as long as they turn cell phones off, stay at least 40 yards away from players and refrain from offering advice. But they'll also have to fork over some cash, as spectators will be asked to pay $10 in exchange for a badge they'll be required to wear "at all times that they are on the course."

    "We will try it at all levels and see how it goes," said executive board vice president Luke Kloker. "Every other state seems to be able to figure out how to make it work."

    According to the report, only two states currently do not allow spectators on the course during high school matches. The new policy will be considered a "pilot program," going into effect for the fall postseason and also extending to the spring season.