Sunday 11 December 2016

European Ryder Cup team - Rated from best to worstLiam Kelly

Published 04/10/2016 | 02:30

1 Rory McIlroy

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Played 5 Won 3 Lost 2 Halved 0 Pts 3

McIlroy was immense in a leadership role for the team. His singles match with Patrick Reed was epic and high-octane with the crowd against McIlroy. His only other defeat was with rookie Andy Sullivan on Friday morning.

2 Thomas Pieters

P 5 W 4 L 1 H 0 Pts 4

What a debut by the rookie from Belgium. He doesn't say much and doesn't really 'do' emotions, at least publicly. Won his singles match against JB Holmes and formed a great partnership with McIlroy. Justified his wildcard selection.

3 Rafa Cabrera-Bello

P 3 W 2 L 0 H 1 Pts 2.5

Another rookie, but the big-hitter from Spain was the only man to go unbeaten for Europe. Took down US PGA champion Jimmy Walker in singles. Excellent chemistry with Sergio Garcia when paired together. Could be a strong combination for 2018.

4 Sergio Garcia

P 5 W 2 L 2 H 1 Pts 2

This was his eighth time to play Ryder Cup. He loves the event, and revelled in the red-hot atmosphere. Featured in a sensational singles battle with Phil Mickelson, as they fought each other to a half, scoring a combined 19 birdies.

5 Henrik Stenson

P 5 W 2 L 3 H 0 Pts 2

The Open champion and Justin Rose could only rekindle the 2014 magic once out of three outings when they beat Patrick Reed and Jordan Spieth in Friday fourballs. But Stenson delivered on Sunday, defeating Jordan Spieth in the second singles match.

6 Justin Rose

P 5 W 2 L3 H 0 Pts 2

Over three days his putting was a tad off, and given the quality of opposition, that was enough to shade the issue. His defeat by Rickie Fowler was Rose's first time to lose a singles in four occasions

7 Chris Wood

P 2 W 1 L 1 H 0Pts 1

Wood arrived eager for action, and then had to cool his heels when captain Clarke left him out of Friday's play. Earned his point in Saturday foursomes with Rose v Walker/Zach Johnson. Lost singles narrowly to Dustin Johnson.

8 Martin Kaymer

P 4 W 1 L 3 Pts 1

Kaymer was a real disappointment. On a team with six rookies every one of the experience players needed to pull his weight , and Darren Clarke got very little return from the two time major champion. Beat Matt Kuchar in singles, but the Ryder Cup was already lost.

9 Matt Fitzpatrick

P 2 W 0 L 2 H 0 Pts 0

Hazeltine just proved a little too much for the 22-year-old. Held in reserve by Clarke until Saturday afternoon when sent out with Henrik Stenson to play Brooks Koepka and Brandt Snedeker. Lost that and lost to Zach Johnson in singles.

10 Andy Sullivan

P 2 W 0 L 2 Pts 0

Five years ago he was stacking shelves in his local Asda, so he has come a long way. A gritty competitor but was dropped after Friday foursomes loss with McIlroy and did not appear until Sunday. Came up short against Brandt Snedeker.

11Lee Westwood

P 3 W 0 L 3 H 0 Pts 0

Disastrous show by Westwood. A captain's pick by Clarke, he was brought in to provide leadership and support for the younger members of the team. Trouble was, his game was not good enough. Dropped himself after Friday morning to work on his game.

12Danny Willett

P 3 W 0 L 3 H 0 Pts 0

Willett described his experience, inelegantly, but accurately, as 's**t' and proceeded to elaborate, calling it 'really s**t.' We will never know how much his brother's comments affected Willett's golf, but he was a big disappointment.

Irish Independent

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