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Revised and updated, this in-depth look recounts The Ryder Cup’s rich history and venerated place in sports, its champions and its characters, and its status as golf’s greatest grudge match.
From its humble origins in 1927 to its place today as golf’s most gentlemanly battle—and a multi-million-dollar international sports event—The Ryder Cup has cemented its place in both its legacy and lore. Golf journalist Tom Clavin and golf commentator Bob Bubka have now made current their seminal work on the tournament, exploring the history and the rivalries, the extraordinary triumphs and devastating defeats, and the U.S. and the European contingents who have made this contest so remarkable.
The names are legendary for any fan of golf: Palmer, Nicklaus, Jacklin, Floyd, Mickelson, Ballesteros, Faldo, Hogan, Nelson, Watson, Strange, Sarazen, Crenshaw, Woods, Montgomerie…the list goes on, as do their pitched battles for dominance and accomplishments on the greens. This up-close and personal look at The Ryder Cup is a must-read for golf fans, especially in preparation for the landmark 40th Anniversary tournament in Gleneagles, Scotland, in 2014.
Before the Dream Team brought top-flight American basketball to the world, golfs Ryder Cup served as the most prominent stage for American pro athletes to beat up on Europe. In this straightforward history, which lends itself to frequent thumbing more than to linear reading, Bubka and Clavinboth veteran golf reporters for TV, radio and newspaperspoint out over and over that the Ryder Cup, with 700 million potential viewers, is the sports event of 1999. Well, perhaps, in this non-Olympic year and with the NBA limping through a shortened, Jordan-less season. Played every two years, the Ryder Cup pits the 12 best American swingers against their European counterparts. The Yanks dominated the tournament from 1937 to 1983 (first against the Brits and then against the entire European continent), but the Europeans have stormed back in recent years, going 4-2-1 since 1985, breathing true excitement into the event and gluing many plaid clad 40-somethings to their TV sets. While comprehensive and filled with nostalgiac memories of putts gone by, this volume reads like a tabloid sports column with a case of giantism. Its for the true golf fan, the one that shoots 36 holes in subarctic temperatures and is unhappy when darkness falls.