EUROPE produced a stunning performance on the last day of the Ryder Cup, winning 8 1/2 points out of 12 to beat America 14 1/2 – 13 1/2 at the Medinah Country Club in Illinois.
Germany’s Martin Kaymer held his nerve on the 18th hole to clinch Europe the vital point that they needed to retain the trophy, thus taking the pressure off Italy’s Francesco Molinari who was paired against Tiger Woods in the final match of the day’s singles.
Going into the day 10-6, many had written off Europe’s hopes of claiming such an unlikely victory, for the USA have never let slip more than a two point lead heading into the 12 singles matches. However, Europe believed. Ian Poulter, who has been the epitome of passion throughout the weekend, portrayed the confidence of a player who knew that his side could overcome the four point gap, and delivered his promise of claiming a point by beating Webb Simpson.
Europe were led out by England’s Luke Donald, with team captain Olazabal placing the world number three in the first match to ensure that Europe got off to great start in the hope that momentum would swing their way. Indeed, the first five matches went Europe’s way, and the seemingly impossible task was now a likely occurrence, with both Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose going from 1-down on the 17th hole to win 1-up after the 18th.
It was clearly a sign and, just like America had done to Europe back in 1999, Kaymer holed a five-footer to clinch the trophy right out of America’s grasp, sparking wild celebrations from the European contingent.
This will undoubtedly go down as one of the greatest Ryder Cup’s in history, meaning that when we look back on the great “Summer of Sport”, we will never forget watching this dramatic finale back at home on this typically cold, English autumn night.