Captain Snedeker excited to serve his country
BY SEAN JENSEN firstname.lastname@example.org September 24, 2012 7:32AM
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 23: Brandt Snedeker watches his tee shot on the seventh hole during the final round of the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola at East Lake Golf Club on September 23, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Updated: October 25, 2012 6:16AM
Early this month, after earning more than $1 million in prize money in less than a week, Brandt Snedeker was selected as one of Davis Love III’s four captain’s picks to the U.S. Ryder Cup team.
During a teleconference Sept. 4, Snedeker — his voice shaky — noted he hardly had slept after Love delivered the good news.
‘‘I was so excited,’’ Snedeker said. ‘‘Just a huge, huge thing for my career. The last few years I really tried hard to make this team, and to accomplish that is a very humbling thing.
‘‘Look forward to getting to Medinah and making Davis look like he’s a genius.’’
Snedeker was in top form Sunday, when he won the Tour Championship in Atlanta and captured the $10 million FedEx Cup bonus. He and the 23 other players on the U.S. and European teams will descend this week on Medinah to play in the Ryder Cup.
None of them will collect a dime.
The biennial Ryder Cup is about patriotism, performing in front of the largest audience in golf and participating in a team event in what is primarily an individual sport.
Golfers are judged by major championships, but their marketability and legacy can be enhanced by their performance in Ryder Cups.
The players with the most Ryder Cup match victories? Nick Faldo with 23 and Arnold Palmer with 22.
Here are a couple of other notable differences between the Ryder Cup and a traditional golf tournament:
† Format: There are 12 singles matches Sunday. Before that, there are 16 matches — eight fourballs (better ball) and eight foursomes (alternate shot) — involving two golfers from each side Friday and Saturday.
† Duration: There are three rounds instead of the four customary for most tournaments.
† Player selection: Initially, selection committees handpicked the teams. But qualification based on performance eventually was instituted, with the captain of each side allowed to make a couple of picks.