Yeah ... and at least Joost is going to win an Olympic medal, which is more than Tiger's going to do
Please no Ryan Palmer. Great week and all, but he's not done anything all year.
Phil and Zach look to be in on points if things hold.
If Sneds has one more solid round tomorrow, I think he and Keegan become almost locks as 2 of the Captain's picks. The third one could go to anyone. Maybe even Mahan.
Spieth played pretty awfully at valhalla. He did lose to Bubba at the masters this year of course, so that's something at least.
Bubba simply schooled the young kid.
Then again Spieth is still a highly ranked American golfer. I just hope he starts playing well and winning more.
It was a bit like the ghost of 1999 when one tournament (the Open) suddenly saddled Mark James with Paul Lawrie and Jean van de Velde, Jarno Sandelin having also worked his way in from the sheer volume of tournaments played. I think we changed the selection process shortly after, or did we have another renewal with the old system.
Payne Stewart famously said that the Europeans weren't good enough to be the American's caddies. I'm inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt in that it was a back handed complement handled clumsily, and mischievously reported in Europe
I think you're right CD (it was about that time). It needed to be done. We've certainly had a few controversial selections inbetween. Both Padraig Harrington and Paul Casey were asked to come back and qualify I seem to recall? or risk not getting picked. Both refused, neither were picked, or played again
It was certainly starting to become possible for journeymen to play every tournament and work their way onto a team and this was weakening what we could put out. We also needed to defend the integrity of the tour too though, so couldn't give every body a pass out
I note incidentally that Azinger has now added his voice to the don't pick Tiger camp (or more like the can't pick Tiger camp). Will he play in Europe next?
Reading the various comments this morning (and I guess these correspondents are all close enough to the pulse in Valhalla) the received wisdom will be that Tiger will take the decision away from Tom in the near future and admit that his valiant defiance has come up short. If he's going to do that though, he owes it to all concerned to make that decision pretty much now (even if its only to be communicated a bit later)
If he isn't going to try and prove his fitness in Europe, then Tom only has the evidence he's got to go on. So far Tiger's own diagnosis of his strength and fitness has proven a little optimistic, but perhaps it ought to be mentioned as well that he's always conceeded he's not yet right
It's over for him this year isn't it?
Yeah, at this point I'm thinking Watson should maybe just take Hunter Mahan. Guy at least seems like a big game player, especially good in match play (won Accenture Match Play Championship in 2012, beating Rory in the final, and lost in the final to Kuchar in 2013).
And of course if there was any doubt before, Phil is on the team for sure. He'll make it on points at this point, won't need to be a captain's pick.
Of the motley group of contenders in the 12-20 range in the rankings though, it appears Ryan Moore was the best with a -2. Ouch.
I wonder how many of these guys actually want to be on the team, though?
Well none of those guys have really had a much better year. He's moved into the top 25 at this point, so at least is in the discussion, especially if Dufner and Kuchar are out. Mahan actually started the year well, but struggled badly from late April to early June. I'd like to see a little more, but if he's straightened things out, he should be a possibility. But only a few more weeks before the captain's picks are announced, I wouldn't be surprised if it's just the next three guys on the list. If Kuchar and Dufner are out, then Moore maybe makes it on points as a replacement. And I wouldn't be surprised if Watson just took the next three guys, Todd, Bradley and Kirk.
The current list:
The problem with Dufner potentially is whether or not he's going to have to miss golf to recover? What's the extent of this injury? I don't know? What's his schedule? at the moment he's outside the team so he looks an unlikely pick to me, unless he's going to play injured. Same with Kuchar. What's his plans and what's the level of his discomfort. Nothing like a few bad shots to start playing with a slightly injured players mind. You're going to be livid as a captain, a team, and indeed a country of supporters if someone is concealing an injury and then has it exposed at Gleneagles. I wouldn't risk either.
I'm not so sure Keegan's nailed on either, albeit I accept he's in the box seat and one of the positions are his to lose, but if he doesn't play solidly in the next 3 weeks, lose it he will. I don't believe he really needs to demonstrate the level of form though that perhaps the other candidates do, and he for one has to happy that Phil's qualified on merit.
Might a better strategy be to hail Mary a bit and go for long hitters, put them in a fourball and say look, so long as one of you out driving the European's you're at least putting the pressure on, or on a similar logic, if one of you is reaching the green with a birdie opportunity, we're giving ourselves a chance. It doesn't matter what happens to the other ball.
As a complete left field rookie pick there are some statistics that make me wonder if Brooks Kopecka
Key players for me are Phil Mickelson who needs to play a Ryder Cup the like of which he's never really done before (or only hinted at being able to), and Bubba Watson who needs to be mollycoddled and kept away from the media as much as possible. I'm trying to see who the totem could be who'd be capable of energising a team. It doesn't need to be the lead by example best player type, but I don't really see that the senior pros on the American team are that type of individual. It needs someone from the middle strata to come out the woodwork and say, "you know what, this is our moment, let's get the hell out there impose ourselves and claim it". Patrick Reed?
Here is who I take on the US side. Snedeker might seem like a long shot, but ultimately the Ryder Cup is a putting contest and that guy can roll it.
These would be my initial pairings:
You sure about that? He's playing on the European Tour, but the Ryder Cup is between nationalities and not between Tours. We probably had golfers for Europe playing on the PGA Tour instead of the ET as well in the past.....