Wednesday 22 November 2017

'Ryder Cups are not won with your mouth' - Sergio Garcia hits back at criticism of European team

Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia

Phil Casey

Spain's Sergio Garcia has dismissed criticism of Europe's team and the hyping of their American opponents by insisting "Ryder Cups are not won with your mouth".

Darren Clarke's side arrived in the United States with six rookies among their ranks, with leading two-time major winner and outspoken American analyst Johnny Miller labelling them "the worst team in many years".

US captain Davis Love's assertion he had assembled "the best golf team, maybe, ever" has also not gone unnoticed by the Europeans.

However, Garcia, playing in his eighth event, said it just provided more ammunition for them inside the team room.

"They are pretty much motivating factors," he said.

"Johnny says a lot of things. Obviously he's not always going to say the right thing.

"You know what they say, opinions are like....we all have one. Everybody's allowed to have their own opinion and that's what they think and that's great for them.

"At the end of the day you don't win Ryder Cups with your mouth, you win them out there on the golf course.

"So that's what we'll see, which team is the best but we know what we have and that's the most important thing for us."

Europe's leading player Rory McIlroy struck a psychological blow for Europe as early as Sunday when he beat Ryan Moore, America's last-minute wildcard pick, in a play-off to win the Tour Championship in Atlanta.

He too believes Europe's players will be fired up by the battle in enemy territory.

"I don't think it's hard for us to find motivation," said the world number three.

"Anywhere you look, whether it be the sea of red you see on the golf course or the comments that are made in the media by the US team or by the captain gives us so much motivation already.

"Whenever we are going up against one of the greatest teams ever assembled that's motivation enough.

"How good a victory would this be if we go out and beat these guys on their home soil?

"They are a very strong team but at the same time we have so many strong players."

Garcia has lost just two of his previous seven Ryder Cups with both defeats coming on American soil.

However, he also has two victories in the States on his record and he rates the win at Medinah last time they were over here in 2012 as one of biggest moments in the event's history.

"I don't know if it's better or worse winning it at home or away," added the 36-year-old Spaniard.

"I think the feeling of winning the Ryder Cup is amazing no matter where it is.

"Obviously it feels like it's a little bit tougher away but you know once you win it that feeling, that sensation that you get, it's very unique and it doesn't really change that much if it's at home or away."

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