Golf

Tommy Snell: Be careful what you ask for

Tommy Snell  Special to the Sun Herald

Supposedly the Presidents Cup Committee decided to reduce the number of matches in 2015 so that the competition would be more competitive. The USA has won every Presidents Cup except two. Something must be done. Right?

Be careful what you ask for. The matches began in 1984, and in 1988 the International Team trounced the Americans 20 ½ to 11 ½. Not a win since.

The team that includes Australia, Japan, Korea and other countries where golf is expanding played the U.S. to a tie in 2003, but other than those two events, the matches have been red, white and blue.

Remember the Ryder Cup?

In the first 27 events, Europe won three times and tied the Americans in 1969 at Royal Birkdale. Let's face it. For more than 50 years the Americans dominated the Ryder Cup. In 1967 at Champions Golf Club in Houston, the US Team trounced their opponents 23 ½ to 8 ½. They took total command of Samuel Ryder's creation.

Back to the future. The Europeans have dominated since 1995. Lanny Wadkins might have ridden through the streets of Rochester, to warn future teams after his 1995 team lost 13 ½ to 14 ½.

One stroke if by land, and two strokes if by sea. The Brits are coming. Since 1995, the American Flag has been in the winner's circle only twice in 1999 and 2008.

In 2004 and 2006 Team Europe overwhelmed the Americans 18 ½ to 9 ½. Most of the other matches in the past 20 years have been competitive, but Team Europe's supremacy has baffled the best US golfers more than a 25-mph swirling wind.

Mark my words.

The International Team will rally in future Presidents Cups, and we'll wonder why we thought the matches weren't competitive.

The pundits will scratch their heads. The commentators will offer more silly judgments. Until then, let's win as many as we can.

Tommy Snell, golf coach at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, writes a column for the Sun Herald.

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