Europe Win the Ryder Cup 2012

Starting the third & final day 10-6 down, the odds were stacked against Europe to even make a reasonable score, let alone retain the Ryder Cup by winning a majority of the 12 singles matches.  But with Luke Donald, Rory McIlroy, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose & Paul Lawrie winning the first five matches, the final day was an amazing show of awesome, nail-biting golf.

Ian Poulter didn’t lead in his match against Webb Simpson until the 17th hole and Justin Rose needed 18 holes to beat Phil Mickelson finishing with two sublime birdies.

While Rory McIlroy beat the young charismatic Keegan Bradley after only arriving at the Medinah Country Club ten minutes before his tee time in a police car with the excuse he had confused Eastern with Central Time!

Luke Donald & Bubba Watson was the first match of the day & the first to finish with Donald winning 2&1. But apart from Paul Lawrie thrashing US rookie Brandt Snedeker 5&3 every match was a tight one, with many switching from red to blue and back again.

It went right down to the wire, the last two matches between Steve Stricker & Martin Kaymer and Tiger Woods vs Francesco Molinari.  With three holes to play both matches were all square with Europe needing just one point to retain the Ryder Cup. And it went down to the 18th when Steve Stricker made his putt and left Martin Kaymer a shot to win or lose the Ryder Cup for Europe. With just one match remaining, Kaymer won the Ryder Cup for Europe in the most amazing comeback of all-time.

In a post-match interview José María Olazábal attempted to dedicate the win to his great friend Seve Ballesteros before breaking down with emotion.

Sunday’s Singles:
Bubba Watson lost to Luke Donald 2&1
Webb Simpson lost to Ian Poulter 2 up
Keegan Bradley lost to Rory McIlroy 2&1
Phil Mickelson lost to Justin Rose 1 up
Brandt Snedeker lost to Paul Lawrie 5&3
Dustin Johnson beat Nicolas Colsaerts 3&2
Zach Johnson beat Graeme McDowell 2&1
Jim Furyk lost to Sergio Garcia 1 up
Jason Dufner beat Peter Hanson 2 up
Matt Kuchar lost to Lee Westwood 3&2
Steve Stricker lost to Martin Kaymer 1 up
Tiger Woods v Francesco Molinari A/S


Kracking Keegan Defies Odds

With assessed odds of 33/1, the betting world did not hold much hope for this year’s Bridgestone Invitational winner, Keegan Bradley.

Despite the lukewarm, if not unhopeful odds issued to him by the Las Vegas Hotel and Casino, one would suspect perhaps a top ten finish at the most; a similar fate offered to Ernie Els at last month’s Open Championship wherein he was given a 40/1 mark up.

Like most things in sports however, odds don’t make up the world; they defy luck and of course deny the passion and strive of the winner.

There’s no denying that the final day of the event is one that shall be remembered in America’s golfing history; noting also that the top three positions were indeed inhibited by country natives.

Indeed, six shots behind the lead with only 13 precious holes left, one would expect a comfortable finish but by shifting into first gear, Bradley pulled off an astounding victory over a flummoxed and somewhat heartbroken Jim Furyk by winning the invitational by a single shot.

Keegan Bradley, who will later this week be defending his PGA Championship title, must have thought that his chances were scuppered when on the 18th, his approach to the green was found bunkered after a tragically mislaid shot.

Partaking in one of the world’s championships however, with a purse of $8.5million, is enough to keep any hungry golfer striving for the equivalent of a photo finish.

For Furyk however, yesterday’s loss will mirror his 2001 invitational defeat against Tiger Woods after an arduous and teeth grinding seven-hole play-off; something made doubly painful after losing to Bradley via a mournful double-bogey:

“I’ve lost some tournaments in some pretty poor fashions, but I don’t think I’ve let one ever slip away nearly as bad as this one.”

Indeed, the loss was felt by more than just Furyk as his nine-year old son was led away in tears after seeing his father defeated by one shot; an image which must have resonated more to Furyk than the defeat itself.

Tiger Woods, who was given the odds of 7-1 after playing The Open, found himself finishing in the eighth tier after finishing the event with a score of -4 to par; earning him a somewhat useful $128,750.

Besides the main man himself, the event signalled a return to form of a certain Rory Mcilroy, who after finishing in a dismal 60th place last month at The Open, pledged his return to form at the Invitational. This was found evident as the young Irishman headed early to the course to practice with the rookie competitors. Mcilroy said last week:
“It’s about taking it from practice onto the course, that’s the difficult part. The more I play and the most holes I get, and the more tournaments I play in, hopefully it’ll just keep coming along.”

Rory’s improved form was also something beckoned earlier on in the week by fellow golfer, Graeme McDowell, who cited that Mcilroy was indeed a name to watch throughout the tournament. With odds of 20/1, Mcilroy lived up to his previous form to finish the final day with three birdies on the scorecard.

Not only was Mcilroy’s form found to be improved but Sergio Garcia also found himself with a bettered performance after finishing the tournament on T29; netting him a handsome $68,000. Though this may seem a long way to the top for some, it hails an improved form after missing the cut during last month’s British Open.

With the Invitational now receding into the distance, all eyes now fall on the 2012 PGA Championship on the 9-12 of August, wherein Bradley finds himself with odds of 55-1; not a bad bet considering his victory there only last year.

If you yourself fancy being the next Keegan Bradley or Tiger Woods, why not take up golf yourself with Direct Golf?