Butch Harmon says Europe's unlikely Ryder Cup triumph was the "greatest day" in the history of golf.
Last Updated: 01/10/12 10:19am
Butch Harmon felt compelled to apologise to European golf fans after predicting there was no way Jose Maria Olazabal's side could launch a final-day Ryder Cup comeback.
The USA led 10-6 going into Sunday's singles matches and required just 4½ points to claim the trophy, but golfing history was made as the Europeans won eight of the first 11 matches to retain the trophy before Francesco Molinari's tie with Tiger Woods saw them win the Ryder Cup outright.
After a dominant display on the first two days, Sky Sports expert Harmon felt the USA were certainties to win the competition, but he says he's happy to admit he was wrong, as he led the tributes to Olazabal and his players.
"This was an incredible day and I will be the first to admit I didn't think it could happen," he told Sky Sports.
"With the way the Americans played I didn't give the European team a chance and I was 100 "per cent wrong. I have to say that to the European team and tell them I apologise for my thoughts.
"It was my opinion and I was man enough to say it and I'm man enough to say how wrong I was.
"That was a phenomenal effort. I don't even know how to describe it. I don't think any of us have ever seen anything like it, the way it transpired and the way it came down to the last matches out there
"I'm so happy for captain Olazabal. He's such a wonderful human being and such a dear friend of mine.
"I feel for Davis Love and his team. I know they feel they had it and they played their hearts out. At the end of the day the Americans can blame themselves, but no, you have to give credit to the Europeans.
"They went out and beat one hell of an American team."
Harmon has coached the likes of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els and Greg Norman during a long and distinguished career in golf.
But he admits the scenes he witnessed at Medinah on Sunday were the best he'd witnessed in several decades of playing and watching the sport.
"I think this is the greatest day I've ever seen in golf," he added.
"Yes, in 1999 the Americans came back from 10-6, but they were at home. For Europe to come over here on this golf course against this American team and win this cup - and yes they won it, it wasn't a tie - I think is the greatest feat in the Ryder Cup history.
"It's the greatest thing I've ever seen. I'll say it again, I thought at the start of the day that there was no chance. I thought this American team was too strong and they'd win easily.
"I was completely wrong. I apologise to you European fans. I just gave you my opinion and I'm man enough to tell you I wasn't even close to being right!
"At 69-years-old I've been in golf my whole life and this is the greatest golfing spectacle I think I've ever seen."
"I thought I'd seen everything you could possibly see. This tops them all."