Before there was a Ryder Cup and then much later a Solheim Cup and a President's Cup there were The Walker Cup Matches.
The Walker Cup began back in 1922 at the National Golf Links of America at Southhampton on Long Island, New York. And it is returning for its 44th rendition.
The Walker Cup still matches Team USA's top amateur golfers against Great Britain's and Ireland's best. The Ryder Cup once did the same for professionals from the USA and the British Isles, until American dominance led all of Europe to be included against them. Since Great Britain and Ireland have begun to hold their own in the last 12 Walker Cups by splitting them, there's been no need to make a similar move for this great event.
The great Bobby Jones, Francis Ouimet, and Chick Evans led Team USA to a victory in the first Walker Cup here 91 years ago. After losing the Cup to Great Britain and Ireland back in 2011 at Royal Aberdeen in Scotland, Team USA would love nothing more to win it back here on this 102 year old C.B. Macdonald designed masterpiece.
Team USA is led by NCAA D1 Champion Max Rona and Jordan Niebrugge, this year's U.S. Amateur Publinks Champ. Great Britain and Ireland counter with Matt Fitzpatrick, who not only this year was the low amateur at The Open Championship, he was the first Englishman in 102 years to win the U.S. Amateur Championship.
The venue is short at 6995 yards by today's standards, but with it's crosswinds and difficult greens, it still should provide a great challenge to the competitors. And with it's long list of past competitors who have gone on to brilliant professional careers, it'll be sure to be showcasing the PGA Tour and European PGA Tour's stars of tomorrow.
Things kick off this morning with four alternate shot foursome matches in the morning followed by eight singles matches in the afternoon. Tomorrow will include four foursome matches in the morning and then all ten team members on both squads competing in ten singles matches in the afternoon. TV coverage will be on The Golf Channel each day from 4-6 PM eastern.
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