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AUDIO
audioRyder Cup history
audioEarly 1920s
audioRyder Cup 1926
History
George Duncan and Samuel Ryder
Duncan (left) persuaded Ryder (far right) to formalise the Cup
The first known international match between British and American amateur golfers was staged at Gleneagles in 1921, with the visitors winning 9-3.

In 1926, St Albans seed merchant Samuel Ryder visited Wentworth for a pre-Open qualifying tournament and was dismayed to see American and British golfers standing apart from each other.

In an attempt to inject a touch of friendly rivalry, he set up a competition between the two factions. A prize fund of five pounds for the winning team was put forward, along with a champagne and chicken sandwich buffet for after the match.

The Britons won easily by 131/2 - 11/2, though Scotland's George Duncan was still moved to suggest he make it a regular event - and the Ryder Cup was born.

Ryder - a keen golfer - had hired his own golf professional to teach him and he honoured his mentor Abe Mitchell by insisting that it be his figure that adorned the top of the Ryder Cup.

The first tournament was not recognised as official because the US team was not representative.

The players were chosen by Walter Hagen, who was captain in the first six Ryder Cup matches. Four out of 10 were ex-patriot Brits and one was Australian, such were the 'Americans' at his disposal.



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