Ryder Cup: brief history
Four facts about the Ryder Cup ahead of the 41st edition of the biennial golf matches between Europe and the US
CHASKA — Four facts about the Ryder Cup ahead of the 41st edition of the biennial golf matches between Europe and the US:
• Holders Europe have won three Ryder Cups in a row, six of the past seven, eight of the past 10, and 10 of the past 15 events. The US has a 25-13 lead with two drawn in the overall rivalry. For the first 50 years, from 1927-1977, it was the Americans against Britain and Ireland, and the US went 18-3 up with one drawn in that span.
• English businessman Samuel Ryder donated the gold trophy for the event. It cost £300 and was made by English silversmiths Mappin and Webb for the 1927 inaugural matches.
• Europe made the greatest last-day comeback in Cup history to retain the trophy in 2012 at Medinah, winning 8.5 of 12 possible points from the concluding session of singles matches. It was Germany’s Martin Kaymer who sank the putt that ensured Europe kept the Cup.
• The US won two of the tensest Ryder Cups. The 1991 "War on the Shore" at Kiawah Island came down to the US leading by one point, with Hale Irwin playing Germany’s Bernhard Langer in the last singles match.
Irwin and Langer were all square entering the 18th hole, which Langer needed to win to capture the singles match and deadlock the team score so Europe could keep the trophy. Langer missed a six-foot par putt and the Americans took the Cup.
In the 1999 "Battle of Brookline", Europe led 10-6 entering the singles, but US players rallied for a 14.5-13.5 triumph. Justin Leonard holed out a 45-foot birdie putt at the 17th to touch off a wild US celebration. Spain’s Jose Maria Olazabal missed a crucial birdie putt.