Golf Comment: The Ryder Cup is like no other golfing spectacle but the extra pressure needs to be harnessed

Sam Torrance
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Captain Paul McGinley is hoping Europe will be in pole position to claim Ryder Cup glory
FROM the opening tee shot tomorrow morning to the final putt on Sunday evening, virtually every golf fan in the world will not want to leave their television screens.

But that is not just the preserve of hardcore enthusiasts but sporting fans with just a passing interest in golf. They will want to witness every single shot and that is why the Ryder Cup is so different to any other golf tournament.

With Majors and other events people will check in with the leaderboard and how things are progressing throughout the day and catch up fully later on but the Ryder Cup is simply an event which needs to watched or followed live.

It is unfair to say that the most dramatic moments in golf have been reserved solely for the Ryder Cup as players have holed some truly magnificent shots to win Majors and important competitions but as an event there is nothing better and it is fair to say the Ryder Cup is unequalled. It is the biggest golf tournament in the world and I have to say that is indisputable and there are a few reasons for this. Firstly, it is a team event and that is a format of the game that is not played very often. It is also different in the regard there is no prize money involved or on offer.

Every player on the European Tour has grown up through the Ryder Cup’s history and has loved the thrill of it in some capacity and there is something bigger attached to this most magical of competitions.

The main attraction of the event is the level of intrigue associated with each and every aspect of the tournament, throughout the build up right up until the first tee shot. And from that moment the real intensity of the Ryder Cup begins.

At Gleneagles this week there will only be four matches on the golf course at any one time until Sunday, when 12 singles matches will be staged to finalise the destination of the trophy and bragging rights.

On Friday and Saturday there will be four fourball matches in the morning and four foursome matches in the afternoon with almost unparalleled focus on absolutely everything.

Every shot a player hits for instance will be seen on television.

With there being such huge excitement and importance placed on every shot, that brings an extra pressure in itself and not something which is evident in other tournaments.

Every single thing will be seen, analysed and scrutinised which all adds pressure but hopefully that is something the European players and team as a whole can thrive on. After all, pressure is a privilege and that is the line the European team needs to adopt over the coming days.

Sam Torrance OBE is a multiple Ryder Cup-winning golfer, a current vice-captain and a media commentator. Follow him on Twitter @torrancesam

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