Presidents Cup: Tiger Woods praises 'team' USA after victory
"It's been one of the more amazing challenges but all the guys, they believed in one another and relied on one another"
Last Updated: 15/12/19 10:52am
United States captain Tiger Woods paid tribute to his team after they completed a final-day comeback to win the Presidents Cup with a 16-14 victory over the International Team at Royal Melbourne.
The Americans trailed 10-8 after the opening three days but the hosts won only two of the 12 singles matches as they slipped to an eighth successive defeat in the biennial event.
Woods clinched a record 27th win in the event with a 3&2 victory over Abraham Ancer in the opening singles and then watched his team wrap up the win from the sidelines.
"We did it together," he said. "We came here as a team. My team-mates and my boys all played well, the captains did an amazing job.
"It's been one of the more amazing challenges but all the guys, they believed in one another and relied on one another.
"This cup wasn't going to be given to us. We had to go earn it. And we did."
Woods, at 43 the youngest captain in the event's 25-year history and only the second playing skipper, finished with a perfect record of three wins from three matches.
It took his overall record to 27 victories, 15 losses and one halved match in his ninth appearance as a player, eclipsing compatriot Phil Mickelson's 26-16-13 tally.
Wow! Just watched one of the most exciting days in Presidents Cup history. What a display of great golf and heart❤️ from both teams. Amy and I are so happy for Team USA 🇺🇸— Phil Mickelson (@PhilMickelson) December 15, 2019
Congratulations on a very inspiring victory!
"This is a perfect golf course. I understand how to play this kind of golf," he added.
"I've been out in this session before as lead-off batter. I'm familiar with being out front and having to lead the team from there.
"Any time you have moments where you're able to do something that is bigger than us as an individual, it's so much more meaningful and so much more special."
Patrick Reed claimed one of Team USA's more notable wins as he bounced back from three defeats to overcome CT Pan 4&2.
Reed had his swing coach Kevin Kirk carrying his bag after his brother-in-law caddie Kessler Karain was ejected from the event for clashing with a spectator on Saturday.
"The last couple of days were tough and today wasn't easy," said Reed. "I played some amazing golf but he put the pressure right back on me."
The honour of holing the winning putt went to Matt Kuchar when he rolled in a five-footer for birdie at the 17th to secure at least a half with Louis Oosthuizen.
"For us to be in a hole, to come back and win this thing - to win it as a team, but to do it with Tiger Woods as our captain was just a huge thrill," he said.
"We had a roomful of some of the greatest golfers in the world, and when he speaks, we listen. I think all of us will look back and have these pictures hanging on our walls and say, We played for and alongside Tiger Woods, the greatest player ever. It was awesome."
The next Presidents Cup is in 2021 at Quail Hollow Club in North Carolina, although the Americans have the small matter of the Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits next year before that.
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