ColumnDifferent Strokes

Rory McIlroy looks back with a laugh at his Ryder Cup naivety

Different Strokes: Europeans celebrate Leona Maguire-inspired Solheim Cup success, while Bryson DeChambeau vents

Rory McIlroy has had a little bit of self-deprecating craic in a video produced by the European Tour ahead of this week’s Ryder Cup in Rome.

Given a page with his own words, he reads into the camera: “It’s not that important to me. It’s an exhibition at the end of the day. Obviously, I’ll try my best for the team but I’m not going to be running around fist-pumping.”

In a great example of how things come back to make you feel silly, McIlroy could see the funny side of words spoken before the 2010 Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor in Wales.

“Who said that?” asked McIlroy, laughing. Before going on, “I said that in my naivety as a young swashbuckling lad. I now have been a part of the Ryder Cup a lot and what those three quotes are couldn’t be further from the truth.”


McIlroy – who has packed in a fair bit of travel in the past week, attending his friend’s stag party in Mykonos in Greece and also making it to the Ireland-South Africa match in Paris on Saturday – will be playing in his seventh Ryder Cup at Marco Simone, starting Friday.

Solheim time again for Ireland?

The Solheim Cup at Killeen Castle in 2011 came too soon for Ireland to be able to toast a homegrown heroine.

That has changed with Leona Maguire’s emergence as the heartbeat of the European team in her two appearances (in Toledo in 2021, when she went unbeaten in winning 4½ points, and last week in Spain, where she won three). Her overall record stands at 7½ points from a possible 10 and she is the only player to have played all five sessions in both tournaments.

The shirts worn in Sunday’s singles were similar to the ones worn in Killeen Castle, something which Maguire and captain Suzann Pettersen spoke about on the range at Finca Cortesin. “I think we all got a little bit of inspiration for that,” said Maguire, who played in the Solheim Junior Cup in 2011.

And there is active work being done to get another Solheim Cup to Ireland. “I know there’s a few golf clubs interested . . . who knows if it is the right time to play or maybe captaining one day might not be too bad,” said Maguire.

Maguire is the women’s touring professional at The K Club, which, of course, hosted the Ryder Cup in 2006. There would be a nice symmetry if it one day hosted the Solheim Cup too.

Word of Mouth

“It would have been nice to at least get a call. There’s numerous people I think Zach should have called out here. We didn’t get that, and I get it, but we’re nothing different . . . . given how I played this week, I think I could have racked up some points for Team USA” – Bryson DeChambeau on not getting a phone call from US Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson. DeChambeau won his second LIV event in three by triumphing in Chicago over the weekend. Brooks Koepka was the only LIV player Johnson picked in his six wild cards.

By the Numbers: 5,000

That’s the number of golf fans that the giant, horse-shoed grandstand on the first tee at Marco Simone will have for this week’s Ryder Cup match.

On this day: September 26th, 1993

The Ryder Cup at The Belfry in the English midlands made a little piece of history, as – for the first time – the tournament was broadcast live on a major American television network, with NBC getting the rights.

It was also the last time that the USA won on European soil.

The competition had seemed to be in Europe’s control when Bernard Gallacher’s team carried an 8½ to 7½ lead in the final day’s singles, and his side then strengthened their position by claiming 3½ points from the first five singles matches.

Then, it all went wrong for Europe.

The Americans won the next five singles, with the list of casualties on the home team including Seve Ballesteros, Jose Maria Olazabal and Bernhard Langer. Sam Torrance was unable to play in the singles after breaking his toe during the night by stubbing it into furniture in his hotel room, which resulted in his match with Lanny Wadkins being deemed a halved point.

The USA won the final day singles 7½ to 4½ to claim a 15-13 overall win.

X-Twitter Twaddle

Leona! Freaking unreal in 0 breathing room – Jessica Korda, former world number one and sister to US player Nelly, giving respect to Maguire.

What an incredible performance from 4 points down by @suzannpettersen and her team @TheSolheimCup Particularly brilliant by Caroline Hedwall and @carlotagolf to turn their matches at the end with some great play – former Ryder Cup captain Pádraig Harrington gives praise to Europe’s Solheim Cup team.

A couple of daggers from Carlota to turn her match around on 16 & 17. What a performance from @SolheimCupEuro & @suzannpettersen to retain the Cup Well done ladies – Europe’s captain Luke Donald who will be hoping to win back the Ryder Cup this week in Rome.

In the Bag

Leona Maguire – Solheim Cup

Driver – Ping G430 LST (10.5 degrees)

3-wood – Ping G430 Max (14.6 degrees)

5-wood – Ping G425 Max (17.5 degrees)

Hybrids – Ping G425 (26 and 30 degrees)

Irons – Ping i210 (7-PW)

Wedges – Ping i230 (utility), Titleist Vokey SM7 (55 and 60 degrees)

Putter – Ping Valut 2.0 Ketsch

Ball – Titleist ProV1