New York Times reporting by Bill Pennington
Six golfers were named on Wednesday Sept. 8 to round out the 12-man American team that will compete in the latest Ryder Cup match against a team of European golfers to be played Sept. 24 to 26 at Whistling Straits in Haven, Wisconsin. The U.S. Ryder Cup captain, Steve Stricker, selected as his choices Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Daniel Berger and Scottie Scheffler.
Six golfers had already qualified for the team based on a cumulative points system linked to recent performances. They were Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Patrick Cantlay. The number of captain’s picks on the American side was increased to six from four for this edition of the competition.
The European team is the defending champion after a commanding victory in 2018 in France. The European captain, Padraig Harrington, will announce his captain’s picks Sunday. Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood, Viktor Hovland, Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm have qualified automatically for the European team. The Ryder Cup is typically played every two years but was postponed in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The American team lost for the sixth time on foreign soil in 2018, a competition that included bickering over player pairings and poor showings by three of the four optional selections made by Jim Furyk, that year’s U.S. captain. Of Furyk’s picks, only Finau (2-1) had a winning record, while Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and DeChambeau failed to win any of their matches.
The U.S. leads the Ryder Cup series, which dates to 1927, by 26-14. But since 1985, when Europe claimed its first victory in 28 years, the U.S. has won only six of the 16 Ryder Cups contested, often losing by lopsided scores. When the competition has been held in the U.S. in recent years, the Americans have fared better, with a 3-2 record since 1999.
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.
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