What Is The Ryder Cup? [Explained]

If you’re looking for brilliant golf and incredible drama, it doesn’t get much better than the Ryder Cup.

But what actually is the Ryder Cup? Let’s have a quick look.

What Is The Ryder Cup?

What Is The Ryder Cup?

What Is The Ryder Cup?

The Ryder Cup is a prestigious golf match played every couple of years between Team USA and Team Europe, similar to the Solheim Cup.

It’s an event with a long history, which first started as a competition between a British team and the United States in 1927 with the vision from Samuel Ryder, but has evolved over the years to include all of Europe.

The match play competition takes the best players from both Europe and the USA, competing against each other across three days to try and win the Ryder Cup.

The three-day tournament comprises five separate playing sessions and has a mixture of Ryder Cup formats, including, four balls matches, foursomes matches and singles matches.

The Ryder Cup scoring is fairly simple, with each match played worth one point and the team that wins the most matches and points will be crowned Ryder Cup champions.

As for the venue, it alternates between Europe and the USA for each event. If it’s held in Europe for one year, the next time it will be played in the USA and so on.

The Ryder Cup is unlike most normal golf tournaments on the PGA Tour or DP World Tour because it’s played in teams.

The team aspect helps to create a unique atmosphere for golf fans and players, similar to other team sports such as football.

Over the years, the Ryder Cup has seen some of the most incredible moments in golf and is now one of the biggest sporting events in the world.

I was lucky enough to go to the 2018 Ryder Cup in Paris and witness the European team claim victory on the final day.

The sheer scale of the event is massive, which helps create one of the best atmospheres I’ve ever experienced.

In particular, the first tee box was absolutely buzzing and pretty much bouncing. I can’t even imagine how intimidating it must feel for the players trying to hit a tee shot there.

Over the decades, the Ryder Cup has grown into one of the most anticipated events in the golf and sporting calendar.

Golf fans from all over the world will be tuning in in September to see which Ryder Cup team will be the winning team come Sunday night.

Who Is Eligible For The Ryder Cup?

Golfers from both Europe and the USA are eligible to play in the Ryder Cup for their respective teams.

European players must have a membership on the European Tour (DP World Tour).

Each team has a criteria for qualifying, which means that the best players from each region are playing when it comes to the event.

Although this criteria has varied over the years, Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA of America currently structure team selection like this:

European Team

The European team qualification is determined using a European Points List and a World Points List, with 3 players from each list earning automatic qualification.

Points for each list are earned from playing well on the DP World Tour and PGA Tour as well as major championships throughout the two previous seasons leading up to the event.

As well as the six automatic qualifiers, the team captain, Luke Donald, gets to have six captain’s picks to complete his 12-man team.

USA Team

The USA team qualification uses just one points list run by the PGA of America, which is based on the PGA Tour and other major tournaments.

The top six players on the points list gain automatic places in the USA team.

Then, like Team Europe, the captain will also get to make six picks for his team. This will usually be based on who has had a good season but wasn’t able to qualify automatically.

Final Thoughts

The Ryder Cup is more than just a few golf matches played by some of the best golfers in the world.

The Ryder Cup is about the spirit of golf, competition and camaraderie, bringing golfers from all over the world together to celebrate what’s great about sport.

The 2023 Ryder Cup matches will be some of the best ever, with the top players from either side of the world, including Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka going head-to-head to achieve Ryder Cup triumph.

If you’re heading to this year’s Ryder Cup, make sure to have your Ryder Cup outfit sorted.


What sport gives the Ryder Cup?

The Ryder Cup is a golf match between the USA and Europe. The best players from both regions play matches against each other and the winning team is crowned Ryder Cup champion.

Why is the Ryder Cup a big deal?

The Ryder Cup is a big deal because of the history and the prestige that goes with winning the trophy. It’s a tournament which is watched by millions around the world, has amazing drama but also stays true to the value of sport and golf.

Who qualifies for Ryder Cup?

The best players from the United States of America and Europe qualify for the respective Ryder Cup teams, alongside a certain number of picks from the Ryder Cup captains.

Ed Welton

Founder, Editor

Ed is the founder and editor at EEE Golf. He’s been playing golf for over 20 years, competing in many top amateur events. He’s played courses all over the world and played with some of the best players in the game. His aim is to help educate people about the game of golf and give insights into the sport he loves most.

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