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Last Updated: Sunday, 24 September 2006, 18:41 GMT 19:41 UK
K Club, Ireland - 22-24 Sept, 2006
Europe 18-9 USA

By Matt Slater
BBC Sport at the K Club

The Ryder Cup has often made a mockery of world rankings and reputations, and the 2006 match has proved no exception.

While some prosper in the heat of battle, others find the pressurised atmosphere too hot to handle.

BBC Sport rates the two captains and 24 players from the 2006 match at the K Club with marks out of 10.


Ian Woosnam - 9
Wasn't looking too clever coming into the event but he certainly proved his doubters wrong when it mattered. His preparations, wildcards, pairings and tactics - complete vindication.

Paul Casey - 9 Match points: 3/4
The Englishman is playing the best golf of his life and got better and better over the weekend. Carried by Robert Karlsson early on and rested on Friday afternoon, Casey was immense afterwards. His ace on Saturday was the icing on the cake.

Darren Clarke-10 Match points: 3/3
To come here so soon after the death of his wife and play this well is remarkable. His fourballs partnership with Lee Westwood is one of the best in Ryder Cup history and his first singles win underlined a superb return to competitive golf.

Luke Donald - 9 Match points: 3/3
You can only do as much as you're asked to do and three wins from three is just what the captain ordered. He and Sergio Garcia shot down the Americans' best two foursomes pairings and he then avenged his 2004 defeat by Chad Campbell.

Sergio Garcia - 9 Match points: 4/5
His team's inspiration and best player for two days, the Spaniard has won 14 of the 20 Ryder Cup games he's played in and lost only four. That one of those defeats came against a red-hot Stewart Cink on Sunday should not detract from his contribution.

Padraig Harrington -5 Match points: /5
The only disappointment for the European team, although he was a little unlucky to come up against some of the Americans' best performances. He was the Irish poster boy for this week and perhaps the expectation got to him a little.

David Howell - 8 Match points: 2/3
Not in the best of form coming into the event, "Howler" rediscovered over the weekend the form that took him into the world's top 10. Teamed up with Paul Casey to crush Stewart Cink and Zach Johnson in the foursomes, he then handed Brett Wetterich a hiding in the singles.

Robert Karlsson - 7 Match points: 1/3
Drew the short straw of taking on Tiger in the singles and put up a decent fight before losing 3&2. The Swede has always said he was good enough for this event and now he has proved it. He and Casey twice shared the points with Cink and JJ Henry in the fourballs.

Paul McGinley - 8 Match points: 1/3
Considered by many to be the potential weak link due to a collapse in form, the Dubliner rose to the occasion as everybody who knew him believed he would. Gained a half with Harrington on Friday, lost to Woods and Furyk but then bounced back to halve with Henry, and showed real sportsmanship to concede a lengthy putt to the debutant.

Colin Montgomerie - 8 Match points: 2/4
Not as dominant as in previous Ryder Cups but he didn't need to be. Lost a close one first up but then showed his mettle with a clutch putt for a half in the afternoon. Gained another half on Saturday before leading "his team" out again on Sunday. A true Ryder Cup great.

Jose Maria Olazabal - 9 Match points: 3/3
Can anybody have played so well so quietly? Happy to let Garcia hog the limelight, the wily Olazabal certainly played his part in that pairing. His singles win over world number two Phil Mickelson simply rubbed salt into US wounds.

Henrik Stenson - 8 Match points: 1/3
He may have stolen Clarke's thunder by hitting the winning putt but who can be angry with him for that? He didn't even realise he'd done it! Took a while to get into the swing of things but on Sunday showed the qualities that have seen him leap up the rankings.

Lee Westwood - 9 Match points: 4/5
Woosie's "controversial" wildcard pick answered any doubts about his right to be here. Three wins and two halves simply confirms his status as a Ryder Cup specialist. Only a few tired shots on Saturday prevent him from getting a 10 and even then I'm being mean as he was ill.


Tom Lehman - 7
The mark may seem a little high given the hiding his team were given, but was it really his fault? There was the PR gaffe of Wednesday's non-practice and he could perhaps have shaken his pairings up a bit on Saturday, but ultimately he was let down by his players and his closing speech was pure class.

Chad Campbell - 6 Match points: 1/3
One of America's better performers but that isn't saying a great deal. Picked up fighting halves with Zach Johnson and Vaughn Taylor in the foursomes and then battled hard against Donald before coming up short at the last. Not bad.

Stewart Cink - 8 Match points: 2/5
One of Lehman's picks and he didn't let his skipper down. Played every session, halving his first three before losing to the brilliance of Casey and Howell. But he then produced the round of the weekend to thrash Garcia. How Lehman could have used more Cinks this weekend.

Chris DiMarco - 2 Match points: /4
What a let down. Was supposed to provide the bite but his game was so out of sorts, no amount of fist-pumping was going to help. Contributed little to the half he picked up with Phil Mickelson and was benched on Saturday. Well beaten by an ailing Westwood in the singles and could have behaved a little more graciously in defeat too.

Jim Furyk - 7 Match points: 2/5
Like Cink, the world number three didn't deserve to be on the receiving end of a beating this bad. Played better than partner Tiger Woods for the first two days and was unlucky to meet the hottest European (Casey) in the singles. He was six under on the back nine but still lost 2&1.

JJ Henry - 7 Match points: 1/3
A good debut for a player most Europeans knew nothing about. Three halves in three games and was his team's best performer in Friday's fourballs. He also salvaged a half in Saturday's fourballs. Battled McGinley to a sporting draw in the singles. Should perhaps have played more.

Zach Johnson - 5 Match points: 1/4
A very mixed bag for the rookie. Was carried by Campbell on Friday for a half but then got very hot on Saturday morning to blitz Stenson and Harrington. But cooled in the afternoon and was beaten by Clarke in the singles. Not very long and his putting is ridiculously streaky.

Phil Mickelson - 2 Match points: /5
The only good thing that can be said about his Ryder Cup is that he contributed more to the foursomes half he won with DiMarco. Played all five and never looked anywhere near his best. But worse than that he also looked lethargic and disengaged. Should have been a banker for Lehman but let him down badly.

Vaughn Taylor - 5
Match points: /2
The last man to enter the fray this weekend he did well to earn a half with Campbell in Saturday's foursomes against the experienced Montgomerie and Westwood. But he doesn't really convince on this stage and was thrashed by Stenson in the singles.

David Toms - 4 Match points: /4
Battled hard, particularly in the singles, but was another one of Lehman's main men to underperform. To earn only one half from four games is a disappointment for a player of his quality. At odds with his irons and his lag putting, normally a strength, was shocking.

Scott Verplank - 7 Match points: 2/2
Lehman picked him but then under-used him. Won the fourballs with Johnson on Saturday morning but let his partner do all the work. Bounced back from the disappointment of being benched to beat Harrington in the last singles game, claiming the second ace of the weekend in the process. America's only 100%er.

Brett Wetterich - 2 Match points: 0/2
Difficult to grade the rookie as we really didn't see much of him. Was said to be playing well in practice, and certainly seemed like a decent chap, but then disappointed in the opening fourballs and disappeared until the singles, where he was thrashed by Howell.

Tiger Woods - 6 Match points: 3/5
The score might seem a bit mean for the team's top scorer but the US needed so much more from their best player. He still doesn't look anything like the player he is as an individual in these team events and no amount of assurances to the contrary will convince us otherwise.

Clarke's sporting victory
25 Sep 06 |  Golf
Ryder Cup: Singles round-up
24 Sep 06 |  Golf


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