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Ryder Cup: Olazabal made the right decisions

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By Greg Moore

GolfWRX Staff

Sorry for you Padraig Harrington fans who wanted to see the three-time major champion make the European team for the Ryder Cup, but Jose Maria Olazabal made the right decisions for his team.

Let’s dig a bit deeper into why Ian Poulter and Nicolas Colsaerts were the best (and I mean logical) selections.

Colsaerts was  No. 9 in European Ryder Cup points and No. 12 in World Ryder Cup points. Poulter was No. 17 in Euro Ryder Cup points and No. 11 in World Ryder Cup points. Harrington stood No. 27 and No. 19 respectively on those points lists, and there were a lot of players ahead of him that were playing a lot better who were also left off the team.

Ian Poulter

This will be Poulter’s fourth Ryder Cup.  He was on the winning teams in 2004 and 2010 and on the losing side in 2008. His record in eleven matches is eight wins and three losses. IJP is also the winner of both of 2010 WGC – Accenture Match Play and 2011 Volvo World Match Play. In the qualifying period for Ryder Cup points, Poulter has had nine top 10s including victory in the 2011 JBWere Masters.

Who can forget just how fired up Poulter gets, not just in match play but for the Ryder Cup, his mates on the Euro team and his country.

His singles record is 3-0-0 with wins over Chris Riley 3 & 2, Steve Stricker 3 & 2 and Matt Kuchar 5 & 4.

Here’s a link to IJP’s Euro Tour page  http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/players/playerid=2133/index.html

Nicolas Colsaerts

He’s the only rookie on the European team. He is No. 9 in the point standings. His match play record is stellar as he finished runner up in 2011 at the Volvo World Match Play and he won the Volvo World Match Play Championship in May, defeating Graeme McDowell in the finals in Spain.

Link to Colsaerts Euro Tour page   http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/players/playerid=3456/index.html

This will be the first time that the European team has been made of its 12 top players in the Official World Ranking with every player inside the top 35 in the Official Golf World Rankings.

As for Harrington, he’s 48th in the OWGR. So you can argue that maybe one of the others players left off like Alvaro Quiros, Marcel Siem or David Lynn should have made the team but the numbers just didn’t add up for Harrington this year.

Click here for more discussion in the “Tour Talk” forum. 

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Greg, a member of the PGA of America for 30 years, travels around the U.S. taking photos for GolfWRX.com on the PGA Tour, Champions Tour, Web.com Tour, LPGA Tour and Symetra Tour. He also covers collegiate and amateur golf, and is a contributing writer for GolfWRX.

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1 Comment

  1. James Lythgoe

    Aug 28, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    I think Olazabal has made the best decision too. Personally, I don’t think the captains need to justify their picks, they are simply picks that the captains have the discretion to make.

    I really like ability and talent of Nicolas Colsaerts. I can only anticipate the contribution he will make to the team. He will definitely be a formidable opponent.

    I am not partisan to either side. The Ryder Cup is such a great competition that produces some of the best theatre in sport, if I am partial I am partial to watching these great golfers compete against each other. Enjoy the Ryder Cup.

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Tour Photo Galleries

WRX Retrospective: Interesting photos from the 2019 Masters

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As of now, we know the 2020 Masters is going to have to wait until November. The tournament will be as exciting as it will be interesting since it will be the first modern glimpse into Augusta National beyond April.

It has also given us the great opportunity to look back with hindsight 20/20 (that was very much an unintended pun) at our pictures from 2019 to showcase some of the most noteworthy and interesting, including some potential foreshadowing of the week that was to come.

2007 Masters champion Zach Johnson isn’t one to change putters too often, but he must have been searching for something last year when testing out this TaylorMade Spider.

This was Viktor Hovland’s last Masters as an amateur. He won low amateur honors and went on to capture the same distinction at the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

TaylorMade always does a wonderful job with major-themed accessories and bags. 2019 was no exception.

Little did we know at the time this was taken, this man would be leading heading into Sunday’s final round. How the tables turned so quickly.

Callaway’s collab with Seamus Golf lead to these flower-themed headcovers.

We can’t forget that Tuesday practice day was rained out and the course was closed at 10 a.m. to both players and spectators. It wasn’t the warm spring kickoff many had hoped for!

Although it was short-lived, it was a rainy Tuesday for all, including caddies.

The weather broke on Wednesday and the view up the 10th hole never gets old.

Did you realize two-time Masters champ Bubba Watson’s Flightscope has a custom pink paint job?

Inexpensive snacks and beverages are always a highlight of any Master’s visit.

The 2019 Masters featured pre-bulked Bryson, who also happened to have a custom FlightScope X3. He looks like a veritable stick!

They say a picture says 1,000 words, but in the case of Tiger Woods, we had no idea how many words would be written come Sunday.

A peek into the bag of Gary Woodland, who would go on to become the U.S. Open Champion only a few months later.

Special shoutout to Gary Woodland’s caddy Brennan Little, who hails from St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, and is obviously a big Toronto Blue Jays fan. He was also on the bag for Mike Wier’s win in 2003.

Although the relationship was short-lived, Sergio used some very cool custom Toulon putters while on staff with Callaway Golf.

The eighth green is one of the most interesting and mounded on the course, there’s not a bunker to be found but danger lurks everywhere.

Undulations at No. 1 are a sight to be seen at ground level.

The iconic, understated clubhouse of ANGC.

The tucked-away first tee spike cleaner is something every course should have.

And of course, the iconic 12th, where so much would be decided come Sunday.

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Tour Photo Galleries

10 interesting photos from the 2020 Players Championship

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GolfWRX is live this week from the 2020 Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

The field this week featured the best golfers in the world, including Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, and more.

Rory McIlroy enters the tournament as the defending champion, looking hoist the crystal again.

Check out all our galleries below, along with highlights from TPC Sawgrass.

General Galleries

Special Galleries

Bettinardi’s St. Patrick’s Day covers  

Brand-new Srixon 745 in Keegan’s bag

Roger Sloan’s custom Cameron

Mizuno JPX 919 Hot Metal irons spotted in Nick Watney’s bag 

Joel Dahmen with a battle-worn hybrid

Fresh eggs for Patrick Reed…

Justin Rose continues to tweak his equipment

Carlos Ortiz looks to be picking up some supplies to mark the end of his driveway…

Jordan Spieth with a Vokey WedgeWorks Proto 60T in the bag

Kiradech Aphibarnrat with lead tape and stamping on cavity-back irons. Solid! 

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Tour News

GolfWRX Spotted: Justin Rose with mixed bag at Arnold Palmer Invitational

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It’s not very often we get breaking equipment news this time of year on the PGA Tour schedule, but this week at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, one of the highest-profile players on tour, Justin Rose, was spotted testing multiple brands of clubs throughout his entire bag.

It started last week at the Honda Classic when Rose put a TaylorMade SIM driver with Mitsubishi Kuro Kage in play. As of today’s first round at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Rose has a mixed set including TaylorMade, Cobra, and Titleist clubs, along with an Axis1 putter.

Here are the details of Rose’s equipment:

Driver: TaylorMade SIM (10.5 degrees @ 8.5)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Kuro Kage XTS 70 TX

3-wood: TaylorMade SIM Max (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Kuro Kage XTS 80 TX

5-wood: Cobra SpeedZone Tour (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ 80 X

Irons: TaylorMade P730 (4-PW)
Shafts: Project X 6.5

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 (52, 56 degrees), Titleist Vokey Design Prototype K Grind (60 degrees)
Shafts: Project X 6.5 (52, 56), Proto Hi-Rev 135X (60)

Putter: Axis1 Rose
Grip: Flat Cat Svelte

Ball: TaylorMade TP5 ‘19 (No. 1)

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