Sam Torrance's Golf Comment: Walker Cup triumph was simply magnificent

Sam Torrance
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Great Britain and Ireland recorded their best ever points tally during Walker Cup victory over US (Source: Getty)
They were simply magnificent. I am of course talking about Great Britain and Ireland who beat a strong United States team on Sunday to regain the Walker Cup at Royal Lytham and St Annes.
The Walker Cup is the pinnacle of amateur golf, the equivalent of the Ryder Cup. Great Britain and Ireland were so strong and secured victory with six matches still to play, going on to record their best ever points tally, winning 16½-9½.
The oldest player for the hosts was England’s Ashley Chesters at just 26 and my abiding thought having watched the encounter was that the future of British golf looks rosy.
It remains such an important tournament and can launch careers. There are people who will postpone turning professional for a year, maybe a year and a half, in order to play a Walker Cup as it’s that important for the CV.
England’s Lee Slattery won last week’s Russian Open and at the weekend he bogeyed the final hole at the Dutch Open where par would have forced a play-off with eventual winner Thomas Pieters of Belgium.
He will have been bitterly disappointed but you can see he is a different player now after his win in Moscow seven days earlier. Confidence breeds confidence.


Looking ahead, we’re down to the last 70 in the FedEx Cup so it will be a huge week at the BMW Championship at Conway Farms Golf Club in Chicago, where only the top 30 in the overall standings will make it through to the fourth and final play-off tournament - the Tour Championship.
For me, any of the top 12 in the standings can still win the FedEx Cup and the $12m plus prize money, and it’s around this time things start to get interesting.
In the past, the third leg of the four-tournament play-offs has given rise to a late glory charge. America’s Billy Horschel was 20th heading into the BMW Championship last year before winning the final two play-off events to claim the overall prize.
Back in 2010, Horschel’s fellow countryman Jim Furyk was 35th ahead of a sixth-place finish at the BMW and win in Atlanta which saw him crowned.
Mind you, only Furyk and Bill Haas in 2011 have won the FedEx Cup having started the Tour Championship outside the top five so it’s very much a case of jockeying for position when things get underway on Thursday -- the FedEx Cup cannot be won this week.
Many top players will need a good week just to make it to the next stage.

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