Steve Stricker latest US captain trying to contain European talisman Ian Poulter
Steve Stricker admits he is the latest US Ryder Cup captain with no idea how to “contain” European talisman Ian Poulter.
Poulter has been a central figure in the contest ever since winning four points in a losing cause on his second appearance in 2008 at Valhalla, where he beat Stricker 3 and 2 in the Sunday singles.
The 45-year-old Englishman also won four points as he inspired the ‘Miracle at Medinah’ in 2012 and was given a wild card by European captain Padraig Harrington for this week’s contest at Whistling Straits despite being without a win since April 2018.
“We just don’t know how to contain him, I guess,” Stricker admitted on the eve of the 43rd Ryder Cup in his home state of Wisconsin.
“We’ve had a difficult time. I played him in a singles match back at Valhalla and lost to him. He’s a tough competitor, and this (competition) brings out the very best in him.
“He seems to make some very crucial putts, hit crucial shots when he needs to, and then just rises to the occasion. It seems like he plays better at the Ryder Cup than he does at any other PGA Tour event throughout the year. He just elevates his game to another level.
“He’s kind of the backbone of that team at times. He’d be a good guy that if we could figure out, and hopefully we can this year, to give him a couple (of) losses for a change. But it’s tough to do.”
The pairings for the opening foursomes matches were set to be revealed during the opening ceremony on Thursday evening, but Stricker said he had already told his players who would be involved.
“Yeah, we have that down,” the 54-year-old said. “We went over this on Monday. I wanted the guys to know what the plan was for Friday on Monday so we can prepare that way.
“I think that’s something that in previous teams that I’ve learned, the communication part, getting guys to understand their position and their roles, so we’ve taken a lot of time and energy in trying to talk to these guys and define both their roles and tell them what we expect from them and what they expect from us.”
Luke Donald expects Europe to be Ryder Cup underdogs despite home dominance
The United States cruised to a record 19-9 victory at Whistling Straits in 2021.
England’s Charley Hull triumphs in Texas to end six-year wait for LPGA title
The victory was the 26-year-old’s first on the LPGA Tour since prevailing at the CME Group Tour Championship in November 2016.
Ryan Fox remembers Shane Warne after St Andrews success
The New Zealander secured his third DP World Tour title in front of his family with a one-shot victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Romain Langasque equals course record to lead Alfred Dunhill Links Championship
The Frenchman recovered from an early bogey with two eagles and eight birdies to reach 11 under par.
Rory McIlroy bemoans ‘ugly year’ and seeks solution to divide in golf world
The arrival of Saudi-backed LIV Golf series has fractured the game in 2022.
On this day in 2014 – Europe retain Ryder Cup with Gleneagles victory
The Gleneagles victory was Europe’s eighth win in 10 matches.
‘Is this where I am going to die?’ Nicolas Colsaerts on kidney disorder battle
The Belgian is the focus of attention this week as he belatedly defends the Cazoo Open de France title he won three years ago.
On this day in 2008: Ryder Cup misery in Louisville for Nick Faldo’s Europe team
Faldo was heavily criticised for his tactics in the closing singles.
Open champion Cameron Smith wins first LIV trophy in just second start
The world number two is the highest-ranked player to join the rebel series.
Robert MacIntyre beats Matt Fitzpatrick in play-off to win Italian Open
MacIntyre birdied the first extra hole at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club, the venue for next year’s Ryder Cup.