AT last it’s here, the weekend we’ve been waiting for longer than a 99 bus. The Ryder Cup comes to Gleneagles and it should be sensational.
Just watched Memories of Medinah to get me in the mood with Ian Poulter pulling the Europeans up by the bootlaces and it was magical.
The final day was probably one of the best displays of matchplay golf you’ll see and hopefully Europe won't put us through those agonies again.
Poulter’s record in the Ryder Cup is amazing and he seems to get so fired up for it. You would expect him to be up there as top European scorer but he’s not had the greatest of seasons.
I think Sergio Garcia will be top of the tree and although we don’t know at the moment whose playing with whom he’ll be my pick. He’s another who seems to love the format and gets pumped up for it.
He’s played 28 matches, won 16, lost eight and drawn four so his form in the tournament is good. I also fancy him for combined top scorer.
On the other side Rickie Fowler is the man to watch. He’s only played three Ryder Cup matches and has still to win one (L1, D2) but he’s such a fighter I can see him having a really good weekend.
His driving accuracy is 59 per cent and GIR 64 per cent and although he might need to improve his tee shots he could be the main American here.
I’m going for Stephen Gallacher to be the top GB and Irish point scorer. Although he’s a rookie the Perthshire course shouldn’t hold any fears for him and he’s got the temperament and shots to have a good weekend.
The Centenary Course is 7243 yards long, which will suit the big hitter, which Gallacher is (average 295 yards). It also has a few doglegs and with his GIR at 70 per cent that will also be to his advantage.
Here are a few stats that might help you pick some winners. Lee Westwood has raised the Ryder Cup more times (6) than the whole of the American team.
In average driving distance the Europeans lead the Americans by nine inches. And you know every inch counts! Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, Victor Dubuisson and Keegan Bradley are the four top long hitters.
Jim Furyk, Zach Johnson, MAtt Kuchar and Henrik Stenson are the most accurate with Americans leading in accuracy, 62.1 to 61.4.
On the greens the Americans are well in front. They have 11 players who average under 29 putts per round whereas Sergio is the only European.
Anyway the big question is: Who is going to win? No way should the Americans be written off but I think the Europeans will retain the trophy. Will they win it? It will be very close and a draw would do.
Garcia top scorer (11-1, Betfred)
Garcia top European scorer (13-2, Betfred)
Fowler top American scorer (11-2, Betfred)
Stephen Gallacher top GB & Irish scorer (16-1, Betfred, McBookie)
Correct Score: Draw (11-1, Paddy Power)
Note: If USA win the Ryder Cup (lift the trophy) Ladbrokes will refund losing online/mobile bets on the following markets as a free bet up £25 – Top European player, Top USA player and Correct Score.
Matchbook.com can reveal the favourite in the Ryder Cup has only won four of the last eight tournaments. The previous results suggest the underdog has just as much chance of triumphing.
The longest price winner in the last eight Ryder Cups was Europe in 1997 at 3-1.
Matchbook show best price of 4-6 on a European victory, 15-8 on the USA and 62-5 on the tie.