No Brookline blues for Woosie's army
- 24 Sep 06, 11:17 AM
K CLUB – Top of the mor…(only kidding, Irish readers), how is everybody feeling today? Confident? Nervous? Depressed?
Rob and I have just walked past Colin Montgomerie doing his cabaret act on the practice range – the Scot is first up today and watching him stride around like lord of the Ryder Cup manor it seems that everything is right in the world.
Not that my American compadres would agree. I have just walked past one who was giving a very forthright interview to Irish television. Over-paid, over-hyped and it’s so over seemed to be the gist of comments on the US team.
I think he’s right…with one caveat, the “B” word.
If I had a euro for every time I heard somebody say Brookline in Dublin last night and on the bus here this morning I would be well down the road to early retirement.
Memories of the Sunday singles massacre in 1999 are still pretty raw for the European golf fan. Let’s hope our boys are inspired by the joy of winning and not the fear of losing.
And I think they will be. This may be offering a hostage or two to fortune, but I’m with Monty on this one – let’s win every session. The redoubtable Scot also pointed out that this is a very different team to the one that got steam-rollered in Brookline. Everybody has already played and contributed, and there are no weak links.
At the start of the week I thought it would be close. Now I’m not so sure. I can see us winning at least seven of these singles to give us a healthy victory margin.
We’ve won the last two singles sessions 7.5-4.5. The old cliché about the Americans always winning on Sunday is so last century.
Yes, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson win more and bigger tournaments than our players, but man for man we are far better side. The rankings - and the results here so far this week - don’t lie.
And in matchplay, in front of a passionate Irish crowd, our prospects get even rosier.
There was another piece of received wisdom coming into this weekend – Tom Lehman would out-captain Ian Woosnam.
Well, I don’t think Lehman could have done much different this weekend, his players just haven’t performed, but he has certainly not out-captained Woosie.
The wee Welshman had to put up with a lot of flak in the build-up (not from this blog!) but he is now only 4.5 points away from leading Europe to an unprecedented third straight Ryder Cup.
But could he have saved his finest strategic gem until the last? Who’s there in the middle of the draw (in victory-sealing territory)? Irish heroes Paul McGinley and Darren Clarke.
And with all respect to McGinley, who has already had his Ryder Cup legends moment, I know who I, and pretty much everybody here, would like to see jump in the lake this afternoon.
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