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Ryder Cup

The Ryder Cup is a biannual golf tournament pitting the golfers of Europe against those of the United States. Originally competed for in 1927, with the US competing against Great Britain. After nearly 40 years of US dominance (Britain won only once between 1935 and 1973) it was extended to Britain and Ireland in 1973 and then Europe in 1979, which made the Cup considerably more competitive.

The cup competition consists of various matchplay matches between players selected from two teams of 12. In 2002, those games consisted of 8 foursomes matches, 8 fourball matches and 12 singles matches. The winner of each match scores a point for their team, with 1/2 a point each for a tied match.

A foursomes match is a competition between two teams of two golfers. The golfers on the same team take alternate shots throughout the match, with the same ball. Each hole is won by the team that completes the hole in the fewest shots. A fourball match is a competition between two teams of two golfers. All four golfers play their own ball throughout the round. Each hole is won by the team whose individual golfer had the lowest score. A singles match is a standard matchplay competition between two golfers.

Founding of the Cup

There is some debate over who suggested the idea for the Ryder Cup. James Harnett, a journalist with Golf Illustrated magazine appears to have proposed a similar idea to the USPGA on December 15, 1920 and, having failed to attract support, the idea was refloated by a Sylvanus Germain, president of a club in Toledo, the next year. This resulted in an unofficial match in 1921, won 9-3 by the British, and another in 1926, won 13 1/2 - 1 1/2 by Britain. A spectator at the second game, Samuel Ryder, saw the potential of the competition and persuaded the two captains to reform their teams in 1927 for the first official Cup. Ryder, who donated a gold cip and had agreed to pay 5 to each of the winning team, attached his name to the new competition.

The women's equivalent of the Ryder Cup is the Solheim Cup. The amateur equivalent is the Walker Cup. A similar event, the President's Cup, takes place between the U.S. and an International team, excluding players eligible for the European Ryder Cup team. Another similar event, the UBS Cup, is contested between U.S. and Rest of the World sides; six golfers on each side must be 50 or over and the remaining six must be in their forties.

Controversial Ryder Cups

TODO : The War On The Shore

The 1999 Ryder Cup featured a remarkable comeback by the Americans. Down 10-6 after the first two days of play, they went 8-3-1 in singles play to take the title. The competition turned on the 17th hole of a match between American Justin Leonard and Spaniard Jose Maria Olazabal. Leonard holed a 45-foot putt to go dormie-1, assuring at least a half point and a U.S. victory (the Americans needed 14.5 points to gain the cup due to the Europeans' 1997 victory at Valderrama). A wild celebration ensured, with players and spectators spilling out onto the green, and across the line of the putt that Olazabal had to halve the hole. There was considerable bad blood after the match and some of the European players complained about the American galleries.

The competition from 1939 to 1945 were cancelled due to World War II. The 2001 match was delayed for a year following the September 11 Terrorist Attacks. At the same time, it was decided to hold the Ryder Cup in even-numbered years instead of the past schedule of odd-numbered years.

2016 Hazeltine National GC, Chaska, MN
2014 Gleneagles, Scotland
2012 Medinah CC, Medinah, IL
2010 Celtic Manor, Wales
2008 Valhalla GC, Louisville, KY
2006 The Kildare Hotel & CC, Straffan, Ireland
2004 Oakland Hills CC, Bloomfield Hills, MI
2002The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, EngEurope15 1/2USA12 1/2
1999 The Country Club, Brookline, MA USA 14 1/2 Europe 13 1/2
1997 Valderrama GC, Sotogrande, Spain Europe 14 1/2 USA 13 1/2
1995 Oak Hill CC, Rochester, NY Europe 14 1/2 USA 13 1/2
1993 The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, Eng USA 15 Europe 13
1991 The Ocean Course, Kiawah Island, SC USA 14 1/2 Europe 13 1/2
1989 The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, Eng Europe
1987 Muirfield Village GC, Dublin, OH Europe 15 USA 13
1985 The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, Eng Europe 16 1/2 USA 11 1/2
1983 PGA Ntnl GC, Palm Beach Gardens, FL USA 14 1/2 Europe 13 1/2
1981 Walton Health GC, Surrey, England USA 18 1/2 Europe 9 1/2
1979 The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, WV USA 17 Europe 11
1977 Royal Lytham & St. Annes, England USA 12 1/2 Britain & Ireland 7 1/2
1975 Laurel Valley GC, Ligonier, PA USA 21 Britain & Ireland 11
1973 Muirfield, Scotland USA 19 Britain & Ireland 13
1971 Old Warson CC, St. Louis, MO USA 18 1/2 Britain 13 1/2
1969 Royal Birkdale GC, Southport, Eng USA
1967 Champions GC, Houston, TX USA 23 1/2 Britain 8 1/2
1965 Royal Birkdale GC, Southport, Eng USA 19 1/2 Britain 12 1/2
1963 East Lake CC, Atlanta, GA USA 23 Britain 9
1961 Royal Lytham & St. Annes, England USA 14 1/2 Britain 9 1/2
1959 Eldorado CC, Palm Desert, CA USA 8 1/2 Britain 3 1/2
1957 Lindrick GC, Yorkshire, England Britain 7 1/2 USA 4 1/2
1955 Thunderbird CC, Palm Springs, CA USA 8 Britain 4
1953 Wentworth GC, Wentworth, England USA 6 1/2 Britain 5 1/2
1951 Pinehurst CC, Pinehurst, NC USA 9 1/2 Britain 2 1/2
1949 Ganton GC, Scarborough, England USA 7 Britain 5
1947 Portland GC, Portland, OR USA 11 Britain 1
1937 Southport & Ainsdale GC, England USA 8 Britain 4
1935 Ridgewood CC, Ridgewood, NJ USA 9 Britain 3
1933 Southport & Ainsdale GC, England Britain 6 1/2 USA 5 1/2
1931 Scioto CC, Columbus, OH USA 9 Britain 3
1929 Moortown GC, Leeds, England Britain 7 USA 5
1927 Worcester CC, Worcester, MA USA 9 1/2 Britain 2 1/2

NB: The 1969 and 1989 tournaments were drawn, so the Cup remained with the previous victors.

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