BREAKING NEWS: USA claim Ryder Cup as Europe face thrashing

By Sports Desk September 26, 2021

Collin Morikawa holed the putt that guaranteed the United States would win the Ryder Cup as the hosts headed for a wide-margin triumph over Europe on Sunday at Whistling Straits.

Defending champions Europe entered the final day 11-5 down and required the biggest comeback in the history of the competition, with the USA needing just 3.5 points to win back the trophy.

The hosts built a 6-2 lead after day one, which increased to a six-shot advantage after Saturday afternoon's four-ball sessions, despite a minor fightback from Padraig Harrington's team.

Shane Lowry and Tyrrell Hatton combined with Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia, who did not lose a game together, to invoke memories of the 'Miracle at Medinah', but Steve Stricker's men quashed prospects of a comeback on Sunday in the singles.

Rory McIlroy kicked off Europe's hopes of a comeback as he managed his first win of this year's cup by cruising past Xander Schauffele, before Patrick Cantlay cancelled out the impact of that victory out by defeating Lowry.

Scottie Scheffler fired in five birdies in the opening six holes and there was no coming back for Rahm in that match, before Bryson DeChambeau put the American side within touching distance after downing all-time leading Ryder Cup point scorer Garcia.

Morikawa sealed the deal in just the fifth match as he launched his tee shot within tap-in range on the 17th, and with Hovland unable to sink a long putt, the USA were assured of at least the half point they required to secure the trophy.

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    Viktor Hovland turned the impossible possible on Sunday, overcoming a six-stroke deficit to win the Hero World Challenge.

    Collin Morikawa was five shots clear at the start of the final round as the American closed in on the world number one ranking, but Hovland had other ideas in the Bahamas.

    On a chaotic day, Hovland – in his first start since claiming the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba – rallied to a stunning one-shot victory with consecutive eagles and a birdie from the 14th and 16th holes.

    Despite bogeying his last two holes, Hovland signed for a 66 and the winners' cheque at 18 under, ahead of Scottie Scheffler (66) in front of tournament host and 15-time major champion Tiger Woods as Morikawa capitulated in a final-round 76.

    "I didn't think a win was going to be very possible," said the 24-year-old Norwegian star Hovland. "But I know this course is tricky.

    "You can make birdies, but it's easy to make bogeys and doubles. If I put a good score up there, you never know what's going to happen."

    An unofficial PGA Tour event, Hovland insisted the win felt like an official one given the star-studded field.

    "Hell, yeah! There's only 20 guys in the field, but the players here are really good, and I feel like my wins have come when the field hasn't been as strong, so for me to do well in a field like this gives me a lot of confidence," he added.

    Morikawa appeared poised to add another piece of silverware to his collection in pursuit of golf's top ranking, but the reigning Open Championship winner crumbled, missing three birdie chances from 10 feet or closer to start the round.

    Two triple-bogeys and a bogey capped a forgettable front nine for Morikawa, who dropped another shot at his final hole to end the event tied for fifth – four shots adrift of Hovland, alongside Justin Thomas (64).

    Sam Burns shot a three-under-par 69 to earn a share of third spot with former Masters champion Patrick Reed (69).

    A four-time major winner, Brooks Koepka had to settle for a slice of ninth position at Albany Golf Club following his two-over-par 74.

    Bryson DeChambeau – beaten by rival Koepka in their exhibition showdown in Las Vegas – closed with consecutive rounds in the 70s after going two over on the fourth day.

    Former world number one Rory McIlroy (75) ended the tournament 12 shots back, while Jordan Spieth's nightmare Hero World Challenge resulted in a six-over-par display after shooting a 76.

  • Marsch leaves RB Leipzig after third consecutive Bundesliga defeat Marsch leaves RB Leipzig after third consecutive Bundesliga defeat

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    Leipzig have already been eliminated from the Champions League and could yet miss out on a spot in the Europa League too as they sit level with Club Brugge on four points in Group A. 

    Marsch has struggled to combine a high-intensity press with a solid defence, with the departure of France international centre-back Dayot Upamecano clearly still hurting the team. 

    Only Cologne (8.6) have a better PPDA than Leipzig (8.6) in the Bundesliga this season – a measure of the number of opposition passes allowed before a defensive action – while the Red Bulls lead the league in high turnovers (159) and shot-ending high turnovers (26), though they have been unable to score from any of them. 

    However, the defence has been Leipzig's downfall. They have already committed six errors leading to shots in the Bundesliga (an increase of one from the entirety of last season) and three of those have ended in goals. None of their mistakes directly resulted in goals conceded under Nagelsmann in 2020-21. 

    Leipzig have conceded 18 goals in the top flight but have an expected goals (xG) against of 23.6. Their xG against in the 2020-21 top-flight campaign was 29.6. 

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  • Morikawa closing in world number one status after seizing control in the Bahamas Morikawa closing in world number one status after seizing control in the Bahamas

    Collin Morikawa is close to overtaking Jon Rahm as the world's top golfer after opening up a five-stroke lead ahead of the final round of the Hero World Challenge.

    A victory for the two-time major winner in the Bahamas will see him follow Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth in becoming the fourth person to become world number one before turning 25.

    Morikawa started Saturday's session at Albany Golf Club as one of three players a stroke behind leader Bryson DeChambeau after an unfortunate bogey on the final hole on day two.

    DeChambeau's lead quickly evaporated with a bogey on the opening hole, however, and the American struggled with three more bogeys on the back nine to finish one-over-par for the day as he slipped down to ninth.

    Open champion Morikawa took full advantage by firing an eight-under 64 in a round that included six birdies and an eagle chip-in on the par-five third.

    Morikawa, who last month became the first American to win the Race to Dubai with a victory at the DP World Tour, is now 18-under after 54 holes on the 20-man field.

    Fellow American Brooks Koepka shot 69, his only blemish a double-bogey on the par-three eighth, to move into second place behind Morikawa.

    Daniel Berger dropped two shots on the final three holes and joins Patrick Reed, Viktor Hovland, Sam Burns and Tony Finau in a tie for third, six strokes behind Morikawa.

    The performance of the day belonged to Harris English thanks to his 10 birdies, though it was not quite a blemish-free round as he dropped a shot on hole one.

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