Sports Outside the Beltway

Ryder Cup begins today, USA leading 5.5-2.5

The every other year event will begin teeing it up this morning at the Vahalla Country Club in Louisville Kentucky. At the last meeting, the Europeans routed the US by the score of 18.5 to 9.5.

No question about it, the US faces another uphill battle this year. Not just because Tiger Woods is out but because half the squad has never played in the matches before. Therefore I predict another Europe victory, this time by the score of 16.5-11.5.

Health and time permitting(I will be having both a occupational and physical therapist coming to my home between 9 and 11) I’ll post some of today’s happenings. So look for updates as the day goes on.

820 am update- Europe’s team of Harrington and Karlsson birdie the first hole to go 1 up over Phil Mickelson and Anthony Kim. Is it 2010 yet?

833 update- Europe’s 2nd team of Paul Casey and Henrik Stenson also win the first hole. Europe is ahead in both the opening matches already.

845- Mickelson-Kim vs Karlsson-Harrington match now all even after 3 holes. Harrington’s tee shot on the 3rd hole finding the hazard.

850- Stenson-Casey team wins hole 2 and goes two up vs US team of Justin Leonard and Hunter Mahan.

855- Mahan/Leonard team wins 3rd hole to bring match back to only 1 down for US. Mickelson/Kim and Karlsson/Harrington match birdies on hole 4, that match remains even.

The first of my therapists arrive any moment now. My next update will be delayed.

902- Lee Westwood and Sergio Garcia birdie the first hole to give them a 1-up lead over Kenny Perry and Jim Furyk.

11:45- My therapists have come and gone, but I’m feeling exhausted. After eating my lunch I’m going to lay down. I’m only 5 weeks and 2 days out from having open heart surgery. My stamina isn’t the best.

As I write, the US is leading in more matches than are square or have Europe ahead.

Mickelson-Kim vs Karlsson-Harrington- Even through 16
Leonard-Mahan vs Stenson-Casey US 3 up through 15(Match is dormy)
Cink-Campbell vs Rose-Poulter- US one up through 14
Perry-Furyk vs. Westwood-Garcia- US two up through 12

If the above holds, the US would lead 3.5-.5 going into the afternoon. Wow.

I may re-continue blogging after I get some rest.

1158- Leonard/Mahan defeat Stenson-Casey 3 and 2. US 1 Europe 0

1218- Mickelson/Kim halve match with Harrington/Karlsson. USA 1.5 Europe 0.5

Afternoon matches have been announced

1245- Mickelson/Kim vs Harrington/McDowell
100 Stricker/Curtis vs Poulter/Rose
115 Leonard/Mahan vs Garcia/Jimenez
130 Holmes/Weekly vs Westwood/Hansen

12:53- Campbell/Cink defeat Rose/Poulter 1 up. USA leads 2.5 Europe .5

Why didn’t ESPN show the first tee shots of the afternoon matches? There isn’t that much going on in the morning still that they can’t handle the afternoon too.

615- I don’t yet have the stamina to live blog all day. Got a solid rest this afternoon after taking off around 1 pm.

The US won 2 of the morning matches, and split the other two to take a surprising 3-1 lead. If the afternoon match scores hold, the USA will be up 6-2 at the end of the today. Truly incredible, no serious golf writer or prognosticator predicted that score before play. Right now Weekly-Holmes are 1 up over Westwood-Hansen with 4 holes to go. The USA has won all the matches so far concluded in the afternoon, with the exception of Rose-Poulter defeating the USA team of Stricker-Curtis.

The US could have another half right now, except for Jim Furyk and Kenny Perry squandering a 3 up lead in their morning match. They ended up halving with Westwood-Garcia.

715 Update- Holmes/Weekly come to 18 with a one-up lead then both drive the ball in the water. The US is likely to only halve the concluding match.

It is also terribly reminiscent of the morning match when Kenny Perry’s drive found the water too. Resulting in another halved match. Two good drives and the US could be up 6.5-1.5 today,

727 Update- Westwood/Soren win the final hole and halve their match with Weekly/Holmes. The US is up by 3 pts. Who would have thought it?

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