On condition that each the GB&I and USA Walker Cup camps had been floored by a abdomen bug within the build-up to the showdown at Seminole, the outdated Sir Alex Ferguson phrase, “it’s squeaky bum time” could have taken on a brand new that means because the biennial battle drew to a finale in Florida final night time.
Previous to the forty eighth staging of this newbie showpiece, Stuart Wilson, the captain of a GB&I facet that was in search of only a third win on American soil within the occasion’s historical past, had stored a lid on his ambitions. “All we wish is to enter the closing singles with every little thing to play for,” stated Wilson. “If it will get like that, then will probably be fringe of the seat stuff.”
After a spirited displaying on the opening day, which led to GB&I trailing 7-5 to their US hosts, Wilson’s staff put in one other shift of defiant zeal throughout Sunday’s foursomes to present themselves hope heading into the ultimate session of head-to-head jousts. By the top of these morning exchanges, GB&I have been only a level behind. Wilson had his want. At 8 ½ – 7 ½ , there was, certainly, a lot to play for.
Ultimately, although, it was a bridge too far for Wilson’s troops. The USA wrapped up a a 3rd successive triumph within the biennial contest and finally got here out 14-12 winners. The GB&I boys gave it a superb go and it was the narrowest away consequence for them for the reason that one level defeat in Chicago again in 2005.
With GB&I’s common world rating coming in at 68 in comparison with the USA’s 15, in addition to that weight of historical past and the impression of the stomach bug, the guests have been at all times going through an uphill process. The Individuals have been too good when it got here all the way down to the singles.
Consistent with the opening day, Sunday’s foursomes have been, by and enormous, splendidly nip-and-tuck. Saturday’s tense tussles had all completed on the 18th. The GB&I duo of Matty Lamb and Jack Dyer, nonetheless, made fast work of their joust with Stewart Hagestad and US Novice champion Tyler Strafaci and received 5 of seven holes from the seventh en path to a 6&5 victory. The opposite ties would go the space, although.
GB&I’s resolve was illustrated by Angus Flanagan and Ben Schimdt who have been 4 down after 5 in opposition to the US duo of Davis Thompson and the highly-rated Cole Hammer. The Individuals have been nonetheless three-up with 4 to play however Flanagan and Schmidt refused to give up and, as their rivals chanced on the run-in with pricey errors, the GB&I pair seized their likelihood and plundered a half-point on the final inexperienced.
A bogey was adequate to seal the deal as Thompson and Hammer made a hash of issues. “We floor it out, we allow them to make errors and so they did,” stated Flanagan.
Because the singles bought underway, the US struck a powerful early blow as Austin Eckroat thumped the beforehand unbeaten Irishman Mark Energy 7&6 within the opening tie.
Alex Fitzpatrick went down 3&1 to Pierceson Coody because the US inched in direction of the 13-point mark they wanted to retain the cup. Wilson’s boys stored plugging away. Joe Lengthy, the Novice champion who was making his first look of the week as a result of abdomen bug that swept via the squads, emerged from a decent duel with John Pak with a one gap victory. Each gamers made a proper outdated hash of the 18th however it was halved in double-bogey sixes and GB&I had an important level.
Lamb beat Thompson by two holes to maintain the slim GB&I hopes alive however it was slipping away from the guests down the order. Barclay Brown surrendered the final gap and had to accept a half in opposition to Quade Cummins whereas Irishman John Murphy misplaced on the seventeenth to Ricky Castillo.
That time took the US to 12 general and when Hammer polished off a 4&3 win over Schmidt, the hosts had the 13 factors they wanted to retain the cup. Hagestad’s 4&2 win over Ben Jones ensured the US received it outright.
“The fellows got here out combating however sadly it was not their weekend,” stated GB&I captain Wilson.
They’ll meet once more on the Previous Course within the house of golf in 2023.