September 29, Beijing time, the last weekend of September 2020, since the last launch of the French National Golf Club in 2018, it has been locked in the log of sports fans. It was the day when the grandest golf feast returned.
On such a day, the motivation for personal glory gives way to the success of the entire team. Suddenly, worries about bonuses and world rankings were forgotten, leaving only the pure pride of representing the country or continent.
Yes, this was supposed to be the weekend of the 43rd Ryder Cup. It was a day when the American team and the European team played against each other, but such a battle did not start.
In 2020, the cancellation of a tournament-the Ryder Cup is delayed-is nothing new. In the new crown epidemic, almost every event, every sports league, and various events have been affected to a certain extent.
But it is in such a place in the calendar: at the end of September, for a while, it seems that some adjustments to the Ryder Cup can still continue.
"In March, when they started to close the tour, these things came to mind," European team captain Harrington team CNN live golf said.
"At that time, we started to make various alternatives. How do we choose the team. How many games we have to include. We have to consider various situations to determine the selection, wild cards, etc."
But when the epidemic worsened and the fans' hope of returning to the grandstand disappeared, in July, the organizers made a decision that Wisconsin would host the stadium of Whistling Gorge and wait one more year before hosting the game. The Ryder Cup will be postponed to September 2021.
Although the PGA Tour resumes in June and the European Tour resumes in July, it is very obvious that golf matches can only be held in a strict control of the epidemic. However, the Ryder Cup is far more than just being held behind closed doors.
The organizers and players know that the event requires the participation of fans.
In July, European Tour CEO Keith Pelley told CNN: "If you can't guarantee 15,000 to 20,000 fans, then the Ryder Cup is not the Ryder Cup. It is essentially a game. Group events. There is no denying that the No. 1 tee experience is the best experience in golf. If you can’t have that experience, is it harmful to the Ryder Cup? I personally feel it is.”
During the long decision-making process, Keith Paley contacted PGA TOUR president Jay Monahan almost every day, as well as some star players from the European team.
在漫长的决策过程中，基思·佩利（Keith Paley）几乎每天都与PGA TOUR主席杰伊·莫纳汉（Jay Monahan）以及欧洲团队的一些明星球员取得联系。
"I remember I said to McIlroy:'Who are you going to raise your hand to? Patrick Reid's caddy? Who will Patrick boo to? Will it be on tour?' That's the magic of the Ryder Cup. "
From 1999 to 2010, Harrington participated in the 6th Ryder Cup. The Irish captain understands the importance of spectators to the event.
"Lively, excitement, pressure, tension. Everything the audience brings will inspire you during the tournament week. I don't think it would be a Ryder Cup without these."
For games without fans, the impact will spread outside the stadium.
According to a survey conducted by Sheffield Hallam University, the 2018 Paris match attracted 27,000 spectators during the Ryder Cup weekend and injected 278 million US dollars into the French economy.
It is the global television agreement that is more profitable. "Unless it's a top-notch competition, TV stations are reluctant to broadcast it," Harrington explained.
"They don't want to broadcast sports events that have bad ratings. They want good ratings, so they know they need viewers."
Due to the postponement, the Ryder Cup returned to its position in odd years.
From 1947 to 1999, the event has always been in the traditional position in the calendar, but after the horror of 911, the game originally planned to be held at the Clock Tower Stadium in England in 2001 was postponed to the following year.
Since then, the Ryder Cup has been held in even-numbered years. The President's Cup, where the US team competes with international teams outside of Europe and the United States, is held for odd years.
For Keith Paley, the return of the Ryder Cup to the traditional odd-numbered years is one of the good things that delayed the event.
"When you see such a result, you will say:'Oh, God, this must be very harmful to us. How can we carry it financially?' But you can also look at it from a completely different perspective and say:'This is quite Positive. We are back to the previous cycle. We always hope to hold it in odd years.'"
Such a plan will postpone the President's Cup to an even-numbered year, and it will also give Europe an extra year to prepare Rome's Marco-Simon Stadium to welcome the 2023 Ryder Cup.
"I won't say that 2022 is not well prepared," Keith Pelli explained. "But one more year, letting the Italian Open be held at the Marco Simon Stadium, and making the stadium more mature, is definitely for us. Great advantage."
“我不会说2022年还没有做好充分的准备，”基思·佩里（Keith Pelli）解释说。 “但是再过一年，让意大利公开赛在马可西蒙球场举行，并使这座体育场变得更加成熟，这绝对是我们的优势。”
From the perspective of the players, waiting for one more year, who can enter the team and who cannot enter the team, will definitely have a huge impact.
On the one hand, some players seem to be able to secure seats, such as McIlroy and Joan Lahm of the European team, Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau of the American team. On the other hand, every team has There are 12 places, and after waiting for a year, who can be selected will definitely be a big change.
Standing on the European side, Harrington admitted that he has set some sights on some young players in the next September game.
"The kids must have gained some time to enter the 2021 team," he said. "The Hagard twins, they are only 18 years old. They are too young this year, but next year? Obviously, Sam Horsfield (Sam Horsfield) will be involved.
他说：“孩子们一定有时间进入2021团队。” “哈加德双胞胎只有18岁。他们今年还太小，但是明年呢？显然，山姆·霍斯菲尔德（Sam Horsfield）将会参与其中。
"This gives young players a chance to score, but it must be a bit difficult for older players because they are one year older. By 2021, the situation will change."
Change is definitely a good thing for the European team. After all, eight of the top ten players in the world are from the United States, and the task of winning on American soil is arduous.
On the one hand, 12 months does not guarantee that fans can go to Wuthering Gorge to watch the game, on the other hand, at least the possibility increases. And all agencies agree that the Ryder Cup without an audience is not the Ryder Cup.
"I think this is the right choice," Harrington concluded, "I hope next year, our situation will be much better."