United States Are Ryder Cup Picks
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Bjorn has gone for experience because five of his automatic qualifiers have not played for Europe in the Ryder Cup. Three of his picks are aged over 40 and the other one is 38. Five of his qualifiers have not reached the age of 30. Paul Casey, Sergio Garcia, Ian Poulter and Henrik Stenson have increased the average age of the team. They have played in 20 Ryder Cups between them and the other eight team members have appeared in just 10. Bjorn’s picks have made for an experienced team containing several younger players who are in form.
Furyk has mixed things up more as two of his picks are rookies in their 20s and the other two have passed their 40th birthday and have played in 18 Ryder Cups. Bryson DeChambeau and Tony Finau are the debutantes whose form has earned them a place in the team. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have been picked due to their vast amount of experience in major championships and the Ryder Cup. We should be betting on their team to bring the Cup back to the United States.
The Ryder Cup is a match play event and each match is worth one point. There are 28 points up for grabs but the United States retain the trophy if the final score is 14 points each. Over the first two days there are eight points to play for in foursomes and fourballs and all 12 players play in the singles on the Sunday. If matches are tied after 18 holes there are no extra holes and each team wins a half point. The magic number is 14 and a half for Europe but as the defending champions 14 for the US.
There are a number of reasons why the United States is the pick for the Ryder Cup and the team you should be betting on this year. The course measures 7,331 yards and has a par of 71 which should suit the visitors. The US PGA Tour players are more used to target golf in tournaments that can develop into putting contests. Tee to green there is little to choose between both sides but the States have an edge when it comes to putting under pressure. There are some weaknesses on the greens in the Europe side and that failing could be crucial. Holing a long putt can change the dynamic of a match play hole and the US have more players capable of doing that.
The captain’s picks and automatic qualifiers have produced two closely matched sides based on world rankings. However, the US have players ranked from two to four in the standings but Justin Rose is playing for Europe and he is number one in the world rankings. Overall the US team have higher ranked players and at number 25 Mickelson is the lowest ranked while Europe are represented by players at number 26, 28, 34 and 44. The US 12 contains one more player from the top 10.
Ryder Cup experience is another factor that favors the United States. Ryder Cup golf is unique and the pressure is more intense. Rookies need to adapt to the experience and it takes a few matches to feel comfortable in the environment. Only three of Europe’s qualifiers have played in the Ryder Cup before but only one US qualifier has not experienced the heat of Ryder Cup competition. Five rookies to three means Team Europe have more newcomers.
Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka have won majors this season. In three total Ryder Cup appearances they have played 13 matches and won nine. Both players have a winning percentage of 75% or higher. Rose has played in 19 matches and won 11. Only Ian Poulter has a better winning percentage but Rose is in much better form. If you are betting on top points scorers your picks should be Rose for Europe and Reed for the United States and the US are the picks to win the 2018 Ryder Cup.