And so it goes once more, the USA wins the 2009 Presidents Cup beating the Internationals 19.5 to 14.5. The AAP report described it best in the first few lines:
The International team continued its record of utter futility on the road when it suffered a five-point defeat at the hands of the Americans…
Last week a reporter asked Geoff Ogilvy if perhaps it’s not such a big deal if the Internationals don’t lose as they won’t get much grief for losing. Ogilvy couldn’t help but agree and I do too. But that has to change and they need to cop some grief. International team captain Greg Norman isn’t helping matters with these statements:
“I’ve met 12 people from nine different countries. To understand where they are and how they’ve got to where they are today is a tremendous victory for me.
“Of course we wanted to win but if you look back on it it’s a tremendous success as far as I’m concerned.”
In hindsight, and that’s what you use to evaluate and get better, Norman should have had Ernie Els up against Tiger Woods. It appeared all weekend as though he’d written off anyone beating Woods and focused on the other matches – with all due respect to those that played against Tiger. Perhaps pairings from the same region is a good way to go. Yang and Ishikawa played well when paired up and Allenby and Ogilvy won convincingly.
There were no doubt some excellent performances on the weekend. The pick of Adam Scott was almost justified, Tim Clark was very good at times and Robert Allenby did everything right until Sunday. Ryo Ishikawa and Ernie Els finished with the best results (3-2) from the weekend but there was a lot of passengers in the International team.
Geoff Ogilvy was horrible the first few days, while Camilo Villegas and Angel Cabrera didn’t record a win. Even Vijay wasn’t very good with 3 losses against his name.
Take nothing away from the USA team. They also had a few passengers as well but on the whole the golf played from these guys was fantastic and a standard you’d expect – then there was Tiger Woods of course on another level altogether, closely followed by Steve Stricker.
But the Internationals cannot be happy with this performance. The event was great to watch and matchplay is so refreshing to see after a glut of stroke events all year. They must not sugar coat the event as a success or any sort of victory until they win. It’s for the good of the event and to get fans flocking to the very different golf course of Royal Melbourne in two years time, itching to see an International victory. A real one.