|Browse by Sport
|Find us on
October 2, 2016
Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
JOHN DEVER: Good evening, everybody and welcome back to the 41st Ryder Cup where I'm pleased to be joined by Ryder Cup Europe.
Gentlemen, we all appreciate your time. I will begin by asking a question of Captain Darren Clarke, and just would love to gather your emotions on what was a valiant defense of The Ryder Cup. You must be proud of the passion and the effort that your team performed --
SERGIO GARC√ćA: Can we bring a ladder for Sully, first, please?
ANDY SULLIVAN: I'm a bit small.
SERGIO GARC√ćA: Stand up, Sully.
RORY McILROY: Actually I shouldn't be saying that (laughter).
DARREN CLARKE: I have to say, this week, I couldn't be more proud of the guys that I'm surrounded with. They did everything I asked of them. They tried their heart out. They worked hard. They fought hard.
But the bottom line is that Davis's team holed a few more putts than we did, and they played better. So when it comes to it, the American Ryder Cup Team deserved to win this Ryder Cup, and we're all gutted and disappointed, and we will be back stronger to fight in two years' time in Paris.
Q. Just a couple of questions. Rory, first, for you, I was on the course for all 17 holes yesterday afternoon, I have to say, I was embarrassed to be an American with what was going on. My question for you is: Why should we not expect to see this same thing show up two years from now as the Europeans would have a natural tendency to want to retaliate? And my second question for anybody, if there is a concern about this kind of behavior, what is the solution? I know Darren and Lee and several were at Brookline where it took a player, Payne Stewart, to step in with Monty on the back nine to say, I'm going to shield you all the way around; what do we need to prevent this being a part of the competition?
RORY McILROY: Definitely, first and foremost, we wouldn't encourage any sort of retaliation. That's just not who we are. That's not what we do. (Team applauding).
There won't be -- and we'll be making that clear. We want to play this tournament in the manner in which it should be played. And between us, the 12 players and vice captains and captains on this team and between the 12 players on the U.S. Team, it was played on the manner in which it should have been played. We have no problems with anyone on either team, and really, it's just a very small minority; 95 percent of the people out there, the American gallery are absolutely fantastic, they really are.
We play week-in, week-out on the PGA TOUR and they couldn't be nicer to us. They are welcoming. They greet us like we are one of their own.
But this week, at times, it has went a little bit too far. But you know, that's to be expected. When you are teeing off at 7:35 in the morning and you're seeing people on the first tee with a beer in their hand and matches aren't finishing until 4:30,5:00 in the afternoon, I know I would be done at that point, I don't know what I would be saying (laughs).
So it has to be expected. It is what it is. It happened this week. You know, a couple of people out there crossed the line, but you know, we'll take it on the chin. We'll move on and we'll definitely not encourage anything like that to happen in France next time around.
LEE WESTWOOD: Can I just say something, as well. You referenced Payne Stewart there, and fair play to Bubba Watson and the two lads that myself and Danny were playing yesterday afternoon. They were trying to cut all that off and they were doing their bit to stop that yesterday, as well. So I think the U.S. Team were as embarrassed about those comments that were coming as you were.
And on a good point, I got called a turd yesterday, which is the first time since I was about 12 years old, so it made me feel young again (laughter).
DARREN CLARKE: Just following up from that, I think it wasn't just your group play, because I was floating about with a lot of guys and a lot of matches watching it, and every U.S. player and every U.S. caddie were trying to do the same thing. They were trying to calm some of those few idiots down that were out there.
And I think on behalf of us all, we have to give massive respect to Davis's vice captains and his team and his caddies for the way they tried to police it on our behalf.
RORY McILROY: For sure.
Q. If you could maybe speak to just the emotions of that match with Patrick, your struggles on the back nine, the difficulty of losing the first match of the day as sort of a statement match, if you will, for the Americans.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, for sure. I think all the energy that I've expended this week, it sort of caught up with me on the back nine today and it caught up with me on the back nine yesterday, as well, playing with Thomas.
I wanted to try to take the bull by the horns and try and -- you know, there's a lot of leaders on this team. It isn't just me. There's a whole lot of guys that have more experience than me. I wanted to go out there and lead by example and give off the right energy and put as much blue on the board as possible. I felt like I succeeded somewhat, definitely because of a great partner I had in Thomas.
But I tried to do the same thing today. I just ran out of steam on the back nine. I felt not physically, but mentally just a little -- I was trying to summon up energy. I was trying to do everything I could. I was taking on loads of fluids and trying to eat plenty and just trying to give it my all, just one last round of golf before I have a little bit of time off. It just wasn't meant to be.
I mean, Patrick played incredibly well all week, and you know, there's not really much more I could have done. Maybe if I would have been 10-under, like Sergio out there today, I might have been able to get a halve like he did.
Yeah, I tried my best. I tried my best for this team, for these group of guys around me, and it just wasn't meant to be today. But you know, that will galvanize us. It will make us stronger to come back in Paris and I wouldn't be surprised if you see a very similar team setup in 2018 and we try to get this thing back.
Q. For Rory or any of the other guys, if drinking was at the heart of the problem, should we tighten up the drinking rules, maybe not having people drinking at 7:30 in the morning?
LEE WESTWOOD: No.
RORY McILROY: Not with their pissy beer, no, I think they will be all right (laughter).
HENRIK STENSON: We were more thinking if everyone have a beer --
RORY McILROY: No, people are here, they are here to have a good time. I don't know how you could police that or limit that in any way, telling people they can't drink until 11:00 in the morning, they are just going to go and buy six beers. Can't do anything about that. People are here to have a good time.
Geez, I know if I was watching The Ryder Cup, I would want to do the same thing. I mean, I'd love to be on the other side of the ropes giving other people abuse, it would be so good. But unfortunately, I have to play inside the ropes and that's a great privilege to have. I'm not sure there's any way you can police that.
Q. For Rory or Sergio or any of the guys --
RORY McILROY: Someone else, not me.
Q. All the talk about the crowd and kind of giving it to you guys all week, but how did you feel the atmosphere was today? Did you feel it maybe was a little bit better today in the singles matches?
SERGIO GARC√ćA: I don't know if I'm the right guy to get that question.
RORY McILROY: Someone else. Justin, go on.
SERGIO GARC√ćA: No, I can handle it (laughter).
RORY McILROY: Trying to do you a favor here.
SERGIO GARC√ćA: No, it's okay.
Today was definitely a little bit better, I would say. Obviously I still -- I definitely know I haven't won a major (laughter). (Team applauding).
JUSTIN ROSE: You're sure.
SERGIO GARC√ćA: I felt like maybe if I dream about it one day and I felt like I had a major, I definitely know I don't have it. I've been reminded of it plenty of times.
But I do have five Ryder Cups with some amazing teams and I'm very proud of that and I wouldn't give any one of them away for a major.
The only thing I can do is hopefully change that up, so the next time we come to the U.S., they will tell me, ah, you only have one major, or something like that, which will sound a little bit better. But it's okay.
At the end of the day, I love The Ryder Cup. There's nothing like it. I loved every minute of it. Even all the bombs that Phil was making on me. But you know, it was another great week, and so many great things that I will never forget.
DARREN CLARKE: One of the other things, I'll just interject here, as well, obviously as captain you try to float around and follow as many groups as you can. With Rory and Patrick, the match, I was following them, because that had a huge bearing on the whole thing for momentum early, and Rory had led up on 16. He was taking his practice swing and got into it and he was about to take a swing to hit it and some guy shouted in the middle of his backswing, and the whole crowd turned on the guy and pointed who he was out to security. The whole crowd that were over there, and that guy was swiftly ejected. And that was all done by the American fans.
So as we keep coming back to, you keep bringing up the crowd, it's only the odd person that created the whole -- while it was unsavory and not the right thing to do, 99.9 percent of the crowd pointed straight at the guy and he was taken away. So the crowd deserve a lot of credit for their policing of the situation, as well.
Q. Question for Darren and Justin. This is the last scheduled major event for Hazeltine for many, many years, probably at least seven to ten years. How do you think the course and the setting presented itself this week and what do you think of it as a venue somewhere down the road, eight, ten years from now for another PGA or U.S. Open?
RORY McILROY: I hope it has more rough, just to say, but that's about it.
JUSTIN ROSE: I've been fortunate to play here in 2002 and 2009, I think it was, and I think they have shifted the nines around, which always creates a little bit of havoc in your memory of the golf course. Having played two tournaments here, I was kind of still, even this week, trying to get my head around the layout and remember all the holes. It was definitely a big part of the early part of the week.
Setup-wise, this course can be as tough as you want it to be, there's no doubt about it. I think today, I think if we were all to be honest about it, I thought the setup was incredibly weak. I thought it was very much a Pro-Am feel in terms of the pin placements. They were all middle of the green.
I don't quite understand that to be honest with you, world-class players, 12 world-class players here and 12 world-class players here in 30 minutes time, and we want to showcase our skills. We want to be tested. For example, the water holes out there, all the pins were as far away from the water as possible.
I mean, the pin on 17 is an absolute, you know, a joke. It's a 9-iron into the middle of the green and you stiff it. So with a match on the line, you kind of feel like you want to have something -- you want a player to step up a little bit more than they have to.
Even 18, if you hit a good drive down there, you've got a wedge into the green, and if you hit a wedge to the middle of the green, you're within 12-foot of the pin. So I just felt coming down the stretch, it was a little soft.
LEE WESTWOOD: And I'm hoping it's a seniors major in ten years' time.
DARREN CLARKE: Thanks.
Q. For Justin and maybe Ian, since we haven't heard, Ian, from you very much this week.
DARREN CLARKE: We have.
LEE WESTWOOD: That is amazing.
SERGIO GARC√ćA: You haven't, we have.
Q. The Americans have imitated what has made you so successful; are you concerned that they are on to your secret sauce and that this could be the start of an American streak of winning five or six out of seven?
RORY McILROY: Come on, Poults.
IAN POULTER: I guess I'm taking this one.
RORY McILROY: What's the recipe of that secret sauce?
IAN POULTER: I think I just looked at a Tweet right now, which --
SERGIO GARC√ćA: You weren't checking Twitter, really?
IAN POULTER: Of course. Of course.
LEE WESTWOOD: Show me secret sauce.
IAN POULTER: The guys brought it this week, and you know, unfortunately we were outplayed, outputted. We've done it in years past. And hats off to the American Team. It was impressive. It was impressive to watch.
I watched Rory and Patrick today, and I'm sure that's what you're alluding to. You know, Patrick pumping up the crowd like he should. It was a credit to the pair of them, to watch them play golf the way they played today. And for you guys that were out there watching, you know, I'm sure we'll read it in the papers tomorrow, it was very, very impressive.
You know, Patrick is one of those guys who gets intense. And so does Rory. And I think that's all in the spirit of the game. It's in the spirit of The Ryder Cup. It was played in the right manner between the players, and you know, it was a good week. Unfortunately we didn't have it.
Q. This is for Sam Torrance.
DARREN CLARKE: Yes, he's here.
Q. In 1985, when you made the winning putt, can you talk about what that meant for European Ryder Cup and did you ever think it would evolve into this long history of success?
SAM TORRANCE: I hope so. It was a great moment for me, but it was a moment for the team. It meant that we won for the first time in a while.
We've been growing for years, The European Team. We've become very, very strong over the last 20 years. We lost this week, but we will be back. And yes, I did think it would get this big. It felt this big 30 years ago, let me tell you.
Q. Question for Danny. With everything that happened earlier in the week and then the result today and your match today, how would you describe your overall first Ryder Cup experience?
DANNY WILLETT: Shit (laughter) (applause).
SERGIO GARC√ćA: He can say it louder, but --
DANNY WILLETT: Being honest. Sorry, would you like me to elaborate? Really shit (laughter).
Q. I don't know how I follow that. Question for Rory. After Gleneagles in 2014, the Americans sort of threw their coach under the bus and appointed a task force. You guys clearly aren't throwing Darren under the bus?
RORY McILROY: Not yet.
DARREN CLARKE: I'll leave if you want me to.
Q. I don't think there's probably going to be a task force appointed. What are some of the positives you take out of the week, despite not having won?
RORY McILROY: There's plenty of positives to take. I sort of alluded to it earlier, but we have, on these two rows of tables, a group that have gotten much closer over the past seven days and a group that you could, you know, possibly see all of us again in The Ryder Cup in two years' time.
I mean, I've got a partner beside me for the next 20 years, I'm not letting anyone else have him (putting arm around Thomas Pieters).
I think there has been positives to take going into Paris in two years' time. Some of the new blood that we have, they have gotten over their first Ryder Cup and now they know what it's about and they know what they are going to expect next time. We'll go to Paris with a more experienced squad and a squad that knows what it feels like. We'll have great leadership again. I think one of the great -- one of the great culture of The European Team, you look at Sam has obviously been a Ryder Cup Captain, and you have guys that have been involved in the team for such a long time. I think that's a huge -- not trying to give anything away here, but that's one of the big parts of our success is that we keep a core group of players and people in the team and around the team. And they know; they have seen it all before and they have done it all before.
You know, that's what we plan to do in a couple years' time. But look, it is disappointing. I wish we could have the feeling that we had in Gleneagles two years ago, but it will make it that much better when we have that feeling again in Paris.
Q. Question for the rookies, how did you find The Ryder Cup? Is it what you expected it to be?
SERGIO GARC√ćA: Yeah, it was great. I loved it. Sorry, you said rookies.
DARREN CLARKE: Go on, Rafa.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: For me, it's been a really good week. I mean, in a way it's kind of ruined every other tournament I'm going to play from now on. It's been really exciting. I mean, getting to share so many moments with all my teammates, learning from the veterans and also just being out there, competing not for us as an individual but for something so much greater than us. It was a very, very huge honor, and it's really been a life-changing week for me.
Q. Can I ask Thomas, please. You've had an amazing personal week. Can you talk about how it's been for you and if there's any particular highlight of all your performances?
THOMAS PIETERS: Well, it's a team effort. We all win and we all lose. I did play good this week, but you know, unfortunately we lost. And like Rory said, hopefully we'll be back with the same team in two years' time.
Q. Funny question to the captain. Two years later, would you consider some French players? We would like to listen to some French.
DARREN CLARKE: Well, thankfully, I won't be captain in two years' time. I'm sure with the amount of talent that we have coming through on The European Tour, there will be some of the French guys coming through. You take a look at Alex Levy a couple weeks ago, he played fantastic. He won comfortably. There's going to be quite a few of those guys pushing for that place.
Whoever makes that team in Paris will be a very strong team again for The European Tour, and as Rory rightly says, it could be exactly the same guys lining up again when it comes to Paris. But if there is a French National in there, then that would be wonderful, as well.
JOHN DEVER: Ladies and gentlemen, the 2016 Ryder Cup Europe team.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports