Europe regain Ryder Cup as majestic Molinari earns fitting finale

Tiger Woods of the USA takes his hand off his club after playing on the 10th during a fourball match on the second day of the 42nd Ryder Cup at Le Golf National in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, outside Paris, France, Saturday, Sept. 29, 2018.

It was Molinari, the first European to win five out of five matches at a Ryder Cup, who had the honour of clinching the winning point when his opponent, Phil Mickelson, found water at the 16th and conceded on the tee.

Overall, as I said above, the US got out played and Thomas Bjorn and the Europeans set up Le Golf National in their favor to help that happen. "This team has been incredible".

Trailing 10-6 coming into Sunday's final-day singles, the United States of America got the ideal start when Justin Thomas took the first match by beating Rory McIllroy on the final hole to reduce the deficit to three points. USA captain Jim Furyk chose not to disrupt his pairings from Friday, altering only the golfers' order of play, and Team Europe continued its dominance in the early Saturday fourball matches.

"There's always a moment where it looks like a spark of light, " Furyk said.

Woods played down his teammate's horror show, though, admitting that it was a similar story to 24 hours before, when they lost 3 and 1 to Molinari and Fleetwood. "We can play well and nothing can happen".

Woods came into the event on the back of a first win in five years at the Tour Championship and supposedly more invested than ever before in the contest having acted as a vice-captain in the victory at Hazeltine in 2016.

When Jon Rahm downed Tiger Woods 2&1 on the 17th hole with his fourth birdie of the day, the only question left was who would do the final deed. McIlroy acknowledged he "didn't have my best stuff out there this morning, but Sergio was encouraging me". Jordan Spieth is an abysmal 0-6 in singles matches in the Ryder Cup and Presidents cup combined, a statistic that is extremely confusing. Thomas Bjorn picked him anyway, saying he was like the captain of a football team.

Sergio Garcia was in tears. His record in fourballs and foursomes, when he goes out with a partner, is an ugly 9-19-1.

Casey's red-hot putter helped him and Hatton to a comfortable 3&2 win against Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler, and Woods was given little support from Patrick Reed who spent most of his time hacking through knee-high rough in a 4&3 loss to Fleetwood and Molinari. "That was my first experience of what it feels like to be on the other side, so coming in here, obviously none of us want to feel like Sunday afternoon".

  • Rosalie Stanley