7.3 C
Dublin
Tuesday, March 31, 2020
- Advertisement -

Ryder Cup Countdown

Must read

The three brains at the heart of golf

When it comes to the heart and golf, Sligo man Jude O'Reilly helps pro golfers to understand their emotions and how the impact of stress may not allow mind and body to function optimally together

Bye Bye old friend – A tribute to John O’Leary

Roddy Carr pays tribute to his great friend John O'Leary

Confessions of a weary pro shop assistant – Coronavirus edition

You thought you were confused waking up this morning? Spare a thought for pro shop assistants around the country whose worlds have been turned upside down by COVID-19 #covidireland

The confusing science of golf

The science behind golf can be so convoluted that many refuse to acknowledge it, but get your head around technology and you can use it to your advantage and achieve astonishing results

With the European Tour having departed the Middle East and arrived Down Under, and the PGA Tour firmly in the midst of the West Coast swing, things are starting to take shape in the Ryder Cup race as all the big hitters – literally and figuratively – have taken to the fairways.

Like his compatriot Lee Westwood a fortnight previous, Graeme McDowell has thrust himself firmly into the conversation with victory in Saudi Arabia. This was classic G-Mac grit and determination, taking on the bombers on a bomber’s course and coming out on top. His nerve and ability to handle pressure is something that captain Padraig Harrington will be all too familiar with and he would dearly love to be able to include an in-form McDowell on his team sheet for Whistling Straits.

Though the prize money was considerably less than Westwood’s in Abu Dhabi, the presence of four of the top 20 players in the world meant that the world ranking points were quite high and have vaulted McDowell into the top 10 on the World Points List and into a provisional place on the team.

With two Australians winning on the European and PGA Tours the previous week, there were no major moves from those hoping to edge their way into the reckoning, but as McDowell was leaving Saudi with airspace and undoubtedly opening a cold beer, Webb Simpson and Tony Finau were battling it out in front of the rowdy crowds at the Phoenix Open.

Simpson has three previous Ryder Cup appearances to Finau’s one, and in securing his sixth PGA Tour win, the 2012 US Open champion has taken a major step to earning himself a plane ticket to Wisconsin in September.

For the likeable Finau, it was a case of another near miss with the consolation of more points racked up in his efforts to avoid requiring a captain’s pick after the FedEx Cup.

- Advertisement -

 

As it stands:

Team Europe

Tommy Fleetwood

Jon Rahm

Victor Perez

Rory McIlroy

Danny Willett

Matt Fitzpatrick

Bernd Wiesberger

Graeme McDowell

Tyrrell Hatton

*Comprised of the top four players on the European Points List and the next five players from the World Points List who are not already included.

 

European Points List – The Big Movers

Graeme McDowell – Up 70 places to #22

Thomas Pieters – Up 3 places to #18

 

European World Points List – The Big Movers

Graeme McDowell – Up 30 places to #8

Adri Arnaus – Up 37 places to #32

 

Team USA

Brooks Koepka

Dustin Johnson

Webb Simpson

Xander Schauffele

Gary Woodland

Tiger Woods

Tony Finau

Justin Thomas

*Comprised of the top eight points scorers on the PGA Tour’s Ryder Cup points list

 

PGA Tour Points List – The Big Movers

Webb Simpson – Up 4 places to #3

Tony Finau – Up 4 places to #7

Bubba Watson – Up 6 places to #15

Tom Hoge – Up 7 places to #20

 

THE LOCKS

Team Europe

Rory McIlroy – Brushed off the dust with another top-five at Torrey Pines as he prepares to regain the world number one ranking.

Jon Rahm – Like McIlroy, you expect to see his name on the top of the leaderboard every time he tees it up.

Tommy Fleetwood – See above.

Team USA

Brooks Koepka – A little rusty after the layoff, though he won’t tell you that. WGCs and majors are coming, so therefore, so is Brooks.

Justin Thomas – Far from his best in Phoenix but he still managed to make a late run and pick up a top-five.

 

THE PROBABLES

Team Europe

Sergio Garcia – Two top-10s in three starts suggests Garcia is on track to book an automatic selection this year.

Team USA

Dustin Johnson – Runner-up in Saudi on his return, I expect DJ back in the winners’ circle shortly and to move into the locks category on this list.

Tiger Woods – Impressive at Torrey on his return to action. As before, if he stays healthy, he plays.

 

THE MIGHT NEED PICKS

Team Europe

Francesco Molinari – Back-to-back missed cuts in the States to start his season. It’s hard to imagine somebody going five-and-oh and not getting a pick the next time round, but on current form, he wouldn’t get it.

Shane Lowry – Above average performances to round out his Middle East travels, but he knows he needs to up his game as the business end of the season draws closer.

Team USA

Jordan Spieth – Is it too early to say Spieth is finished? Of course it is, but it’s not too early to say he’s struggling big time.

Rickie Fowler – Followed his annual missed cut at Torrey Pines with an uninspiring T-37 when defending in Phoenix. Not as big a worry as Spieth, but not lighting any fires either.

- Advertisement -

New Gear

Footjoy delivers comprehensive spikeless line-up for 2020

Footjoy's latest offering boasts more comfort, versatility and durability with a range of models to suit all golfers

Spring is in the air with Footjoy’s colourful SS20 collection

FootJoy has launched a brand-new Spring/Summer apparel line to kickstart the golfer’s season in 2020. You'll feel warm just browsing the attire!

Adidas’ journey to End Plastic Waste hits the golf course

Adidas athletes who teed it up in last week's Players Championship walked a mile in David Attenborough's shoes, wearing select apparel and footwear made from upcycled plastic waste

PowaKaddy lifts curtain on exciting CT range

PowaKaddy is continuing to push the boundaries of ultra-compact, lightweight design with the introduction of the completely remodelled 2020 Compact range

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

The three brains at the heart of golf

When it comes to the heart and golf, Sligo man Jude O'Reilly helps pro golfers to understand their emotions and how the impact of stress may not allow mind and body to function optimally together

Bye Bye old friend – A tribute to John O’Leary

Roddy Carr pays tribute to his great friend John O'Leary

Government confirms course maintenance can continue

In some good news for golf in Ireland, our courses can be kept pristine in preparation for our return to the game, whenever that will be, though rules are in place #covidireland

Maguire, McIlroy & Lowry can look forward to Tokyo 2021

We’re going to call this a good sports news story of 2020, although we’ll have to wait a year to experience it. It’s been confirmed that the postponed Tokyo Games will be celebrated from July 23 to August 8, 2021

Tiger, Rory & Shane all grounded as private courses shut up shop

Courses home to the game's stars like the famous Bear's Club, National, Trump National, Seminole, Admirals Cove and the Medalist Club have all closed their gates in the fight against COVID-19