Golf's World Cup Recap
For warm weather sports like golf and tennis, the year is coming to an end. For the most part, mainstream events have come to an end, and the remaining tournaments can be viewed on Direct tv sports channels geared specifically toward covering single sports. This does not mean, however, that there is nothing to be excited about, or to read about, regarding end of the year events in these sports. For example, Roger Federer just treated his fans to a magnificently reassuring display of brilliance at the ATP World Tour finals tournament – and, perhaps even more notably, the United States golf team just ended a lengthy drought by surprising the world to take the golf World Cup. Golf's World Cup does not typically get a whole lot of attention. After all, in sports like golf and tennis, where certain tournaments are labeled as more prestigious due to prize money, participants, and other factors, some of the other significant events tend to be overlooked. However, the end of year World Cup is really a fascinating tournament that pits teams of two from various countries against each other as a friendly international competition to round out the season. And this year, while traditional American heavyweights like Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods were absent, it was Matt Kuchar and Gary Woodland of the United States proudly bringing home the trophy.
Heading into the final round of the tournament on Sunday, November 27th, the Ireland team – which featured Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell – had a two stroke lead, and looked to be a sure favorite to close out the cup. However, McIlroy and McDowell cooled off a bit on Sunday, managing only a par 72 and dropping into fourth place. Meanwhile, the American team got hot at the right time and completed the final day with a 67, 5-under par, to claim first place overall. Their final score was an impressive 24-under for the entire event, two strokes ahead of the English pair (Ian Poulter and Justin Rose) and the German pair (Martin Kaymer and Alex Cejka), both of which scored 22-under.
For American golf fans, Kuchar and Woodland’s victory marked a prideful return to the top. According to ESPN, the last American victory in the golf World Cup came eleven years ago, courtesy of Tiger Woods and David Duval. Since then, many of the European teams have gained ground on the Americans, and U.S. golf prestige has taken a bit of a hit on both a team and individual level. However, with Tiger Woods still struggling to regain his form on the individual circuit, Kuchar and Woodland made a huge statement for U.S. golf by bringing home the country’s 24th World Cup title.