By Paul Myers
It is often said that the only rivalries in sports are the ones where there is a healthy competition back and forth, with both sides winning their share of contests. If that is true, then the Presidents Cup is no rivalry. Although the matches in the 2015 edition of the Presidents Cup were highly competitive, the outcome was the same as it has been so many times through the years – the United States team prevailing over the International side. The competition has been staged 11 times since its inception in 1994, with the Americans winning 9 of those 11 meetings. There has been one tie, in 2003, and the International team’s lone victory came all the way back in 1998 at Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Australia.
Not the Ryder Cup
The majority of golf fans would agree that the Presidents Cup doesn’t offer nearly the excitement that is found every other year when the Ryder Cup takes place. Of course, the Ryder Cup has a longer history, but it has been far more competitive as well. Although the European side is on a great run in recent years, there has been plenty of back and forth when it comes to the Ryder Cup competitions. However, for the Presidents Cup, it has been about as lopsided as a competition can be. It seems certain that this event will need to see at least a couple of International victories before it can take a more prominent place in the world of golf.
Plenty of Talent
It would appear to be the lack of depth within the International side that has caused it to fall short so many times. Certainly, there is no lack of star power at the top of the team, as there are typically two or three truly great players included in the International squad. In 2015, players like Jason Day, Adam Scott, and Louis Oosthuizen made for a formidable trio. And, to give credit where it is due, the Internationals were more than up to the task of battling the Americans all the way to the end. When all was said and done, a Bill Haas victory in the final match of the Cup led the U.S. to a 15 ½ – 14 ½ win. The International team more than held their own, but it was not enough in the end.
Despite their ugly record – winless in the last eight tries – it would seem that the International side will take home the Cup sooner rather than later. With Jason Day poised to remain at the top of the game for years to come, and an increasingly deep pool of talent behind him, they seem to be closing the gap on the dominant American group. Of course, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler, and others will have something to say about that. To be sure, the International side will bring everything it has to Liberty National Golf Club in New Jersey in 2017 with the goal of breaking a losing streak that will be near two decades when the event finally rolls around.