Irish Win Ryder for Europe

Paul McGinley holding the Ryder Cup.
Paul McGinley holding the Ryder Cup.

By Irish America Staff
December / January 2003

The European Ryder Cup Team, which included several Irish players, triumphed over the United States in the 34th Ryder Cup held at the Belfry, North Warwickshire, England, in late September. Of the twelve team players, three were Irish, one of whom, Paul McGinley, was playing in his first Ryder Cup.

The Americans had been expected to win. They had five of the top10 players in the world while Europe’s star players were off-form and the team had several rookies.

However, Europe’s Captain Sam Torrance’s tactics of playing his best players first instead of last, like U.S. Captain Curtis Strange, paid off as Europe swept to a 151/2-121/2 victory. Irish players Padraig Harrington beat Mark Calcavecchia while Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley halved with their opponents David Duval and Jim Furyk. McGinley’s half point against Furyk meant that Europe had enough on the board to ensure overall success with two matches still out on the course.

While the players celebrated, Torrance paid tribute to McGinley and the rest of the team. “It had nothing to do with me. I led the boys to water, and they drank copiously,” he said.

The Ryder Cup is scheduled to take in Ireland in at the world-renowned K. Club, in County Kildare. ♦

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