Ryder Cup: Bernard Gallacher’s guide to Team USA

Jim Furyk, captain of Team USA. Picture: AP
Jim Furyk, captain of Team USA. Picture: AP
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Bernard Gallacher, who played in eight Ryder Cups and was also captain on three occasions, runs the rule over Jim Furyk’s side

Bryson DeChambeau

A new guy on the block, he’s confident about the Ryder Cup and says he wants to play with Tiger Woods. Whether or not the captain wants him to play with Tiger is more important. He’s got an unusual game. He’s a bit eccentric, but he certainly deserves to be on the team.

Tony Finau

He’s got in through his sheer consistency this year. He’s had 11 top-tens and it was difficult for Jim not to pick him. They think he is going to be the ideal guy for a Ryder Cup due to the fact he’s long off the tee and also a straight-hitter. He’s got the game for foursomes and fourballs.

Rickie Fowler

I’ve always admired Rickie and I think he’s a major champion in the making. I remember him playing in his first Ryder Cup in 2010 at Celtic Manor, where I was working for Radio Five Live, and he’s a real fighter in this event. He’s got a good temperament and is a strong player.

Dustin Johnson

He’s got a superb singles record, winning all three of his matches, and that’s because he’s tough to beat. There’s an intimidation factor about Dustin due to the fact he hits it so long. He’s a major threat to the European team, that’s for sure.

Brooks Koepka

You can see him and Johnson being a pairing somewhere along the line and they look like a very strong fourball pairing to me as 
they play a similar game. Brooks has a great temperament, as he showed at the US Open this year. You also have to admire how he’s come back from a serious injury that forced him to miss the Masters this year.

Phil Mickelson

He’s obviously still got a very strong appetite for the game at 48. The amount of money he’s won you’d think he might be taking it a bit easy, but he isn’t. He’s driven by trying to beat records. We’ll just have to wait and see if this is a Ryder Cup too far for Phil, but for most of the season he’s been leading the putting stats on the PGA Tour.

Patrick Reed

He’s a very tough competitor and it didn’t surprise me that he became a major winner in The Masters this year. I suppose it’s understandable that he’s not had a great season since then but they don’t call him “Captain 
America” for nothing.

Jordan Spieth

There’s always a bad swing in his game but you have to admire his temperament. If you are a captain, you’d want him on your team but his current play is not great. However, he’ll probably rise to the occasion because of the fact he’s so competitive.

Webb Simpson

He’s not a long hitter but he’s very accurate and also a very good hybrid wood player. We know he’s got a good temperament, as he showed when he virtually spreadeagled the field in The Players’ Championship this year at Sawgrass. He’s also got Ryder Cup experience.

Justin Thomas

He’s a great player and I have a lot of admiration for Justin. He’s been well coached by his father, a PGA pro as was his grandfather. Golf is in his blood. There doesn’t seem to be a weakness in his game. He’s a very strong player.

Bubba Watson

A lot of his best play was at the start of the year when he won at Riviera. But he’s a tough player to play against because you never know quite what to expect from him apart from the fact he’s going to be long off the tee. He also has a good touch around the greens.

Tiger Woods

You’ve got to admire the way he’s come back from all his back surgeries. He doesn’t putt as well as he used to, but he’s getting closer all the time to winning again. In the past, he wasn’t really a team player. But I think we are seeing a new Tiger Woods.