Almost 2 months after the Ryder Cup 2023 ended in a resounding victory for Europe (16.5/11), it’s time to take stock and look ahead.
First of all, the numbers:
- Europe has been unbeaten on home soil for 34 years!
- the first day of the competition saw the USA unable to win a single match… unheard of!
- In the 2nd foursomes session, the American pair Koepka/Scheffler suffered the heaviest defeat in Ryder Cup history (9&7) against the Scandinavian duo Aberg/Hovland.
On paper, the US team looked like the logical favorite, with players from across the Atlantic occupying the top 30 places in the world rankings.
But once again, European team spirit, solidarity and self-sacrifice proved stronger than pure talent.
Captain Luke Donald managed to turn a group of players into a team… something Zack Johnson clearly couldn’t do!
With Rory Mcilroy in the lead, the “bosses” of the European team(Jon Rahm, Victor Hovland and Tommy Fleetwood) set the example.
In the opposing team, the supposed leaders at best “missed out” and at worst totally collapsed under the pressure.
Add to this the almost non-existent preparation of the US team (who came to reconnoitre the course only once, with only some of the players) and the young class of the European team, who responded to the challenge… and all the elements for defeat were in place.
After the euphoria of victory, it’s time to look ahead to the next Ryder Cup, to be held in 2025 on New York’s iconic Bethpage Black Course.
The captains have yet to be announced, but there’s a wild rumour that Tiger Woods might be named !
This could provide an electroshock to try and put the humiliating American defeat behind them.
That said, the tiger’s track record as a player doesn’t really militate in his favor.
In 8 appearances, he has won just 13 times, losing 21 and drawing 3 !
Beyond the numbers, he represents the ultimate archetype of the individualistic golfer.
Focused on his game during tournaments, showing no emotion and having no interaction with his many fans.
All things considered, it’s not certain that one of the greatest players in history is also a great Ryder Cup captain.
A case in point is the immense Jack Nicklaus.
Having taken part in 6 Ryder Cups as a player, he has a very positive record of 17 wins to 8 losses and 3 draws !
However, despite these results, his record as captain is not stellar:
- 1983: 14.5/13.5 PGA National victory
- 1987: humiliating first defeat for the US team on home soil AND on the course built by Jack Nicklaus himself (Muirfield Village).
To sum up: The Ryder Cup 2025 promises to be an exciting event!
Between a European team that will remember the humiliation suffered in 2021 after the triumph of 2018 and a US team that will be keen to redeem itself in front of its home fans.