The Ryder Cup is a golf trophy contest held every other year matching a team of players from Europe and a team of players from the United States. The name of the tournament came from Samuel Ryder who had watched the first casual match of this format and though it would be good to make the match official. He donated the first gold cup prize and they named the contest after him. The first official Ryder Cup match was played in 1927 in Massachusetts.
Each Ryder Cup team is captained by an experienced golfer. They will get to choose some of the golfers who will play on the team, but most of the team is chosen according to how well they have played since the last Ryder Cup. There is a point system that is in place and their position on the team is dependent on their points.
The matches in the Ryder cup involve various match play matches. Currently, the matches consist of eight foursome matches, eight four ball matches, and twelve singles matches. The winner of each match scores a point for their team with Â½ point each for any match that is tied after 18 holes.
A foursome match is competition between two teams of two golfers. The golfers on the same team take alternate shots throughout the match with the same ball. A team takes the hole when it completes the hole with the fewest shots.
A four ball match in the Ryder Cup is also a competition between two teams of two golfers, but all four golfers play their own ball throughout the round rather than alternating shots. Whichever golfer completes the hole with the lowest score wins the hole.
A singles match is a standard match play competition between two golfers.
Many changes have been made to the Ryder Cup over the years, but it still remains one of the most exciting and competitive tournaments in the golf world. The next Ryder Cup competition will be held in 2008 at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky.
While teams have yet to be officially picked, we do know that the United States Ryder Cup team will be captained by Paul Azinger. Right now, it appears we’ll probably see Tiger Woods, Jim Furyk, and Davis Love III as team members based on their points they have accumulated.
The European Ryder Cup team will be captained by Nick Faldo. Expect to see names like Colin Montgomerie, Sergio Garcia, and Luke Donald as probably team members.