The European team staged one of the most remarkable come backs in sporting history this morning to claim the 2012 Ryder Cup.
Until this morning, the final day of the 2010 Ryder Cup was the most dramatic golf we’ve ever watched, but this morning’s climax to the 2012 Ryder Cup has easily surpassed the 2010 for drama that saw the European Team channel the spirit of the late Seve Ballesteros and produce one of the greatest come from behind victories in sporting history.
Going into the final day, Team USA led 10 – 6 and needing only 4 and a half points to claim the Ryder Cup, very few gave the Europeans any chance of winning. But when the first five singles matches went the way of Europe, the ‘scoreboard pressure’ began to mount on the Americans and an upset was in store.
Dustin Johnson and Zach Johnson won their matches to settle American nerves but if was the more experienced US players that ultimately lost the trophy. With two holes to play, Phil Mickelson was one hole in front of Justin Rose. Two remarkable putts later and Rose had pulled off an unlikely win and European hearts were beginning to wonder if the unthinkable could happen.
When Westwood disposed of Kuchar, and Garcia flipped the score on Jim Furyk, Europe needed just a point from the final three matches on course to secure 14 points and the Ryder Cup. It came in the form of out-of-form German, Martin Kaymer.
Leading into this event, it was obvious Kaymer’s golf was the weak link in the team but a crucial par save on the 17th when the usually unflappable Steve Stricker made bogey, gave the former US PGA Championship winner the lead.
Stricker sent a bewildering long putt way left of the hole on the final green to rule out any birdie. But his brilliant par save meant Kaymer had to sink a five-foot part to get Europe over the line.
The putt sent European golf fans wild and the look of relief on Francesco Molinari’s face was obvious. He was in the final group and battling Tiger Woods. A match, that then held no significance on the overall result.