By Duncan @ DEVEL Golf
Several weeks have now passed since the Ryder Cup and it's a good time to reflect on how Team Europe can wrestle the trophy back from the Americans.
Following Alex Noren’s 3rd win of the season at The British Masters last week we discuss whether the European Ryder Cup Team are missing a trick by not deploying a similar rule to the “Horschel Rule.”
For those of you that don’t know, the “Horschel Rule,” as it is widely known, is the option to select a player the week before The Ryder Cup based on his (very) recent form. It was introduced following Billy Horschel’s remarkable run of form shortly before the 2014 Ryder Cup (where he won the FedEx Cup) but because the team had already been picked he was left out.
This season Alex Noren won for the 2nd time at The Omega European Masters but unfortunately that was the week after Darren Clarke selected the European Team. Had Darren Clarke had the option to pick a player the week before The Ryder Cup he may well have picked Noren. It would certainly have been hard to ignore a player who had 2 wins, a 2nd place and an 8th place finish in his last 6 starts prior to the Ryder Cup.
There hasn't been much discussion about Alex Noren’s spectacular recent form and the fact he missed out on The Ryder Cup. Perhaps this was because he did not play in the 3 tournaments before the team was selected, which probably put him out of Clarke’s thinking.
Players such as Justin Rose have already said the reason for defeat was that they simply came up against a hungrier American team. However, why not tweak the selection process to give ourselves the very best possible chance in future Ryder Cups? Do we really need a Ryder Cup qualification period that spans 12 months when form is such a key component to golfing success? Perhaps a 9 month period would be more appropriate, or even a shorter 5/6 month period starting from the Masters.
As it stands, Noren’s golden period has neither counted for this years Ryder Cup nor the 2018 edition. It can’t be fair that a player should miss out on a Ryder Cup and not have his performances count towards the next one…....just ask Billy Horschel.
The Devel's Advocate is our resident golf blogger. With long experience of covering golf there aren't many issues he doesn't have an opinion on!