Record win helps Europe dominate US in Ryder Cup

2 months ago 59
Venue: Marco Simone Golf and Country Club, Rome Dates: 29 Sep - 1 Oct
Coverage: Live radio commentary on BBC Sounds, live text updates on BBC Sport website and daily highlights on BBC2

Viktor Hovland and Ludvig Aberg stormed to a record Ryder Cup victory that left world number one Scottie Scheffler in tears as Europe surged further ahead.

Europe won three of the four morning foursomes in Rome to stretch their lead over the United States to 9½-2½.

Hovland, and rookie Aberg, aided by some poor play by Scheffler and Brooks Koepka, romped to a 9&7 triumph.

Max Homa and Brian Harman combined to give the Americans their first full point of the contest with a 4&2 win.

But it was scant consolation as the visitors were again trounced in the alternate shot format, amid reports of unrest in the US team.

It is understood that Patrick Cantlay has refused to wear a cap this week because he is not getting paid to play in the biennial contest. The US players were paid to play in the Presidents Cup - a Ryder Cup equivalent against a rest of the world team.

Cantlay was also the only US player to not wear a cap in their team photos.

Both he and his friend and Saturday morning playing partner Xander Schauffele also missed the US team's pre-Ryder Cup visit to the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club earlier in September.

There was no questioning their commitment on the course though, as they fought back from three down after eight holes, winning three holes in succession from the 12th to draw level.

However, Tyrrell Hatton, who holed winning putts on the sixth and eighth holes, rolled in another on 16 to put Europe back in front and he and Jon Rahm won it on the next when Schauffele missed from four feet after the Spaniard nearly holed his tee shot.

Scottie Scheffler being consoled by his wife MeredithScheffler was consoled by his wife Meredith after a record Ryder Cup defeat

And there was no questioning what a record defeat meant to Scheffler either as the Texan broke down as he was driven away on a buggy.

A pushed drive on the first led to a double-bogey six and he and five-time major winner Koepka combined to bogey and double bogey the next two to hand Europe an advantage they would not relinquish.

Indeed they took full advantage with Sweden's Aberg, who only turned professional in June, hitting a pin-seeker of a tee shot that set up a win on the fourth. And the pair shared five more birdies in the next six holes to complete an extraordinary victory.

Much was written about captain Luke Donald's perceived gamble in giving Aberg a wildcard pick. But the 23-year-old has repaid the faith shown in him with two points from two matches with Hovland and Europe may well have found another successful partnership.

More to follow.

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