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1987 Ryder Cup

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Seve Ballesteros Jose Maria Olazabal 1987 Ryder Cup

Jose Maria Olazabal (left) and Seve Ballesteros first played together as a team at the 1987 Ryder Cup.

Stephen Munday / Getty Images
Score: Europe 15, USA 13
Site: Muirfield Village in Columbus, Ohio
Captains: Europe - Tony Jacklin; USA - Jack Nicklaus
Terrific team play drove Europe to victory at the 1987 Ryder Cup - the first-ever win by a Europe/GB&I team on United States soil.

The famous partnership of Spanish golfers Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal was first used here, and the "Spanish Armada" went 3-1-0 as a pairing. Sandy Lyle and Bernhard Langer partnered three times, and won all three of their matches. And the Nick Faldo/Ian Woosnam partnership produced a 3-0-1 record.

The sides split the Day 1 foursomes and Day 2 fourballs, 2-2 each session, and Europe took a slim 2.5 to 1.5 advantage in the Day 2 foursomes. The difference in the outcome was the blanking of Team USA in the Day 1 fourballs - Europe won that session, 4-0.

That sent Europe into the singles session with a 5-point lead. So even though the Americans easily won the singles (7.5 to 4.5), it simply wasn't enough.

In addition to being Europe's first win in the U.S., its victory here marked the first time in Ryder Cup history that a GB&I/Europe team won back-to-back Cups. Europe had won the 1985 Ryder Cup, too. So the 1987 Ryder Cup marked a turning point in the competition's history: The Americans had dominated prior to the mid-1980s, but Europe would dominate the next 20 years of Ryder Cups following.

It was a bitter defeat for American captain Jack Nicklaus. Not only was the Golden Bear the first U.S. captain to lose a home Ryder Cup, but the defeat happened at Nicklaus' own course, Muirfield Village in Ohio.

Ballesteros led Europe with an overall 4-1-0 mark. Perhaps the biggest disappointment on the American side was the 0-3-1 record of Larry Nelson. Nelson had played two previous Cups and won all nine of his matches - he entered the 1987 match with a 9-0-0 record.

One of the best-known incidents that occurred in the 1987 Ryder Cup was Ben Crenshaw snapping his putter in anger. It happened in Crenshaw's singles match against Eamonn Darcy, on the sixth hole. Crenshaw had to finish the game using his 1-iron and the leading edge of his sand wedge to putt. Darcy won the match 1-up.

Team Rosters:

• Europe: Seve Ballesteros, Gordon Brand Jr., Ken Brown, Howard Clark, Eamonn Darcy, Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer, Sandy Lyle, Jose Maria Olazabal, Jose Rivero, Sam Torrance, Ian Woosnam
• USA: Andy Bean, Mark Calcavecchia, Ben Crenshaw, Tom Kite, Larry Mize, Larry Nelson, Dan Pohl, Scott Simpson, Payne Stewart, Curtis Strange, Hal Sutton, Lanny Wadkins

Day 1 Results:

Foursomes
• Curtis Strange/Tom Kite, U.S., def. Sam Torrance/Howard Clark, Europe, 4 and 2
• Hal Sutton/Dan Pohl, U.S., def. Ken Brown/Bernhard Langer, Europe, 2 and 1
• Nick Faldo/Ian Woosnam, Europe, def. Lanny Wadkins/Larry Mize, U.S., 2-up
• Seve Ballesteros/Jose Maria Olazabal, Europe, def. Larry Nelson/Payne Stewart, U.S., 1-up
Fourballs
• Gordon Brand Jr./Jose Rivero, Europe, def. Ben Crenshaw/Scott Simpson, U.S., 3 and 2
• Sandy Lyle/Bernhard Langer, Europe, def. Andy Bean/Mark Calcavecchia, U.S., 1-up
• Nick Faldo/Ian Woosnam, Europe, def. Hal Sutton/Dan Pohl, U.S., 2 and 1
• Seve Ballesteros/Jose Maria Olazabal, Europe, def. Curtis Strange/Tom Kite, U.S., 2 and 1

Day 2 Results:

Foursomes
• Curtis Strange/Tom Kite, U.S., def. Jose Rivero/Gordon Brand Jr., Europe, 3 and 1
• Nick Faldo/Ian Woosnam, Europe, halved with Hal Sutton/Larry Mize, U.S.
• Sandy Lyle/Bernhard Langer, Europe, def. Lanny Wadkins/Larry Nelson, U.S., 2 and 1
• Seve Ballesteros/Jose Maria Olazabal, Europe, def. Ben Crenshaw/Payne Stewart, U.S., 1-up
Fourballs
• Nick Faldo/Ian Woosnam, Europe, def. Curtis Strange/Tom Kite, U.S., 5 and 4
• Andy Bean/Payne Stewart, U.S., def. Eamonn Darcy/Gordon Brand Jr., Europe, 3 and 2
• Hal Sutton/Larry Mize, U.S., def. Seve Ballesteros/Jose Maria Olazabal, 2 and 1
• Sandy Lyle/Bernhard Langer, Europe, def. Lanny Wadkins/Larry Nelson, U.S., 1-up

Day 3 Results:

Singles
• Andy Bean, U.S., def. Ian Woosnam, Europe, 1-up
• Howard Clark, Europe, def. Dan Pohl, U.S., 1-up
• Sam Torrance, Europe, halved with Larry Mize, U.S.
• Mark Calcavecchia, U.S., def. Nick Faldo, Europe, 1-up
• Payne Stewart, U.S., def. Jose Maria Olazabal, 2-up
• Scott Simpson, U.S., def. Jose Rivero, 2 and 1
• Tom Kite, U.S., def. Sandy Lyle, Europe, 3 and 2
• Eamonn Darcy, Europe, def. Ben Crenshaw, U.S., 1-up
• Bernhard Langer, Europe, halved with Larry Nelson, U.S.
• Seve Ballesteros, Europe, def. Curtis Strange, U.S., 2 and 1
• Lanny Wadkins, U.S., def. Ken Brown, Europe, 3 and 2
• Gordon Brand Jr., Europe, halved with Hal Sutton, U.S.

Player Records (wins-losses-halves)

Europe
Seve Ballesteros, 4-1-0
Gordon Brand Jr., 1-2-1
Ken Brown, 0-2-0
Howard Clark, 1-1-0
Eamonn Darcy, 1-1-0
Nick Faldo, 3-1-1
Bernhard Langer, 3-1-1
Sandy Lyle, 3-1-0
Jose Maria Olazabal, 3-2-0
Jose Rivero, 1-2-0
Sam Torrance, 0-1-1
Ian Woosnam, 3-1-1

USA
Andy Bean, 2-1-0
Mark Calcavecchia, 1-1-0
Ben Crenshaw, 0-3-0
Tom Kite, 3-2-0
Larry Mize, 1-1-2
Larry Nelson, 0-3-1
Dan Pohl, 1-2-0
Scott Simpson, 1-1-0
Payne Stewart, 2-1-0
Curtis Strange, 2-3-0
Hal Sutton, 2-1-2
Lanny Wadkins, 1-3-0

1985 Ryder Cup | 1989 Ryder Cup
Ryder Cup Results

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