Why the Ryder Cup is the Greatest Sporting Event in the World.


The occurrence of this comes quite posthumously, as the Europe teams dominance basically died at Hazeltine on the weekend.  There are no doubts in my mind that the American team crushed us.  And as irritating as the native fans were, the golf that was played was unbelievable.  Near enough every single member of the US team was on fire, and leaps ahead of the European team.  Now, we all know the reason for this (Brexit), but I’ll save that for the moment, and attempt to describe the feeling the competition gives me, which I hope is achievable even if you don’t like Golf, or joy.

Golf is literally the worst sport in the world and if you’ve seen Robin Williams bit on it, you’ll know what I mean.  To play, it’s painful if you’re rubbish, and I’m 90% rubbish, so rounds of Golf just turn into stress for me.  Watching it is the complete other end of the spectrum, because suddenly everyone is really good at it.  Moment after moment you are blown away by the skill of the professional player, and when it comes to the Ryder cup, everyone turns it on a little bit more.  There is no prize money, thus everything is fuelled by pride and competitiveness.  The best way to describe the passion of it all, is to go through the golfers slap.  It’s effectively a ‘lo-five’, except the two players hit each others hand extremely hard. They hole a long putt, win a point for the team, then proceed to hit each others hand like they’re trying to punch a door through.  Yet they don’t feel a thing, as the adrenaline pumping through them numbs the pain, and if you’ve tried this with your mate, it really fucking hurts. There numbness amplifies, and you find yourself sat on the sofa feeling the same as them.

Sport at the highest level is always riveting, but there’s something about the Ryder Cup that is so intense.  There is a similar tone with a massive football match (I’m talking Liverpool/AC Milan Istanbul champ league), a tight Wimbledon final or the Ashes.  I’ve realised that the breathtaking entertainment comes the rivalry, which is weird.  It’s weird because Europe vs the US isn’t really an old fight, there is no old enemy feel there.  Then they start playing Golf against each other, and a deep sporting hatred is born.  Before you know it, Rory Mcilroy is screaming back at the American fans to keep quiet as he holes a long putt.  It is just sheer passion, passion that arises from hitting a small ball with a club.

I’m glad Europe lost.  The competition is heightened even more now that the teams are more balanced.  Also, we deserve it, and it will hopefully be a secret message that we should have never voted to leave the EU.


Side-note:  The second greatest sporting event is of course the Kabaddi world cup.