The Presidents Cup, which pits the best golfers in the United States and the Rest of the World every two years, except for Europeans (it's called the International team), will be played starting this Thursday at the Quail Hollow Club in Charlotte (USA), with the latent shadow of LIV Golf or Arab Super League, a circuit that will or will not affect both teams.
Presidents Cup, schedule
The PGA Tour organizes the Presidents Cup. Let us remember that in retaliation for the abandonment of the American circuit by 17 players, some of them ‘notable', the Tour has suspended all dissidents, and the result is that both teams will be left without players key when the competition starts.
The United States will be without majors winners Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka. Nor with a ‘totem' like Phil Mickelson, who has played more Presidents (12) and games (55) than anyone. He probably would not have entered the team on merit, but almost certainly he would have had his space as vice-captain, for example.
His absence, however, will have less of an impact on a powerful American squad that has three of the top five in the world rankings, led by number one Scottie Scheffler. And there will be, among others, Collin Morikawa, Justin Thomas, Xander Schauffele, Patrick Cantlay and Jordan Spieth.
However, the International team of 12 players cannot feed on the wardrobe that American golf does have and the loss of the number three in the world, the Australian Cameron Smith, winner of the British Open and the TPC this year, is a great handicap.
for the aspirations of the Rest of the World to lift the Presidents Cup for the second time. The South African Louis Oosthuizen, the Chilean Joaquín Niemann and the Mexican Abraham Ancer are also not available for the international captain Trevor Immelman, who has summoned up to eight ‘rookies' (record).
The Australian Adam Scott, who is playing his tenth Presidents Cup, and the Japanese Hideki Matsuyama, his fifth, are the only international players who have played in more than one edition. In the previous 13 editions of the Presidents Cup, the International team has only achieved one victory, in 1998, when the event was held in Melbourne, Australia.
The rest have gone to the American hosts, with the exception of the 2003 South Africa tie, which ended in a draw. The last time the United States hosted the event in 2017 at Liberty National in New Jersey, they won 19-11. With the advantage of playing at home once again and with the support of 40,000 fans who will gather daily at Qual Hollow, there are fears that an inexperienced International team could take a humiliating beating.