Rónán MacNamara in Rome
Shane Lowry’s plan for success at this week’s Ryder Cup was to keep control of his emotions, that plan went out the window before he had even hit a competitive golf shot.
Standing on the first tee before getting his foursomes match with Austrian rookie Sepp Straka underway against Collin Morikawa and Rickie Fowler, Lowry burst into celebration when Viktor Hovland’s sensational chip in on the first green appeared on the big screen adjacent to the first tee.
Lowry was the highlight of a dismal week for Europe as they suffered a record breaking defeat to the USA in Whistling Straits two years ago and he admitted he needed to generate his own passion in the absence of away fans. This week in front of a partizan home crowd his goal was to control his emotions.
However, he was a bundle of joy on the first tee and exploded with passion on multiple occasions on Friday morning as he and Straka won 2&1.
“First tee. I stood on the first tee trying to stay calm, and I’m watching Viktor on the big screen and he chipped in, and I lost it. That’s what the Ryder Cup does to me. It’s a very special tournament. I really enjoyed it today,” beamed Lowry.
“Luke spoke to me during the week about keeping, Sepp is a very easygoing, laid-back type of fella, keeping him like the way he is. I’m not sure I did a great job of that, but I feel like we brought each other around the golf course well today. And look, like I said, that’s the stuff that the Ryder Cup does to you.
“You know, it’s amazing walking on every tee, every green, up every fairway, the crowds are cheering for you. And just hearing obviously we were very fortunate this morning, we had a lot of things go our way. The crowd got on our side fairly quickly. You know, you could hear the roars just echoing around the course, and it was a very special morning of golf.”
It was Lowry’s first foursomes point in what was another great day in his career as he helped Europe to a first-ever opening session whitewash in the history of the contest and it’s records like these and Ryder Cup wins he wants to be remembered with.
“Why wouldn’t I be invested in the Ryder Cup? I’m European. I play professional golf for a living. This is where you want to be. I mean, we’re very fortunate to have José María Olazábal with us this week. He’s been very successful individually on the golf course, but people know him for the Ryder Cup.
“Same with Seve. You know, what do people know him for? Ryder Cup. When I finish my career, I think obviously I’m very fortunate to have a Claret Jug in my house, but you know, I really want one, if not multiple, of these under my belt as well. So yeah, I mean, I just love it. I love this it’s honestly the most special week in golf. There’s a reason it’s the greatest tournament in golf.”