American fightback falls short as Europe run out convincing seven-point winners in Paris
Europe’s golfers have won back the Ryder Cup after beating the US team 17.5-10.5 after a tense, dramatic and historic afternoon at Le Golf National in Paris.
Italian Francesco Molinari, who become the first European plater to contribute a maximum five points from his five matched, sealed the victory with his four and two win over Phil Mickelson.
Molinari, who was immediately drenched in beer by celebrating fans, said it meant everything to him: “So much, so much more than majors, more than anything. It’s been an incredible week. Obviously they had probably the strongest team ever and were just so good.”
Moments earlier, Europe’s Ian Poulter, also known as “The Postman” because he always delivers, had beaten world number one Dustin Johnson setting his team up for victory against their US counterparts.
Heading into Sunday’s final-day singles trailing 10-6, the rejuvenated US team got off to the perfect start when Justin Thomas took the first match by beating Rory McIlroy on the 18th hole to reduce the deficit to three points.
Jim Furyk’s US team managed to bring the deficit down to just one point after Webb defeated Justin Rose and Tony Finau, but the holders failed to hold their nerve, allowing Europe, captained by Thomas Bjorn, to fight back.
Tommy Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy led “thunder clap” cheers with an exuberant 70,000 strong crowd, while Thomas Bjorn embraced each of his “amazing” players.
“Some people say golf is boring – well, this is certainly not boring,” said Bjorn. “I’ve experienced a lot of Ryder Cup’s but this is the top one.”
His opposing captain Jim Furyk said: “You have to tip your cap, they outplayed us.”
The Europe team’s victory means the US has not won the biannual event away from for 25 years. Furyk’s team was billed as the strongest ever to play for the cup, but the US players, not for the first time, failed to live up to the hype on the course.
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