Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Ian Poulter: All my life I've been told I'd never be anything...

Ian Poulter celebrates Europe's memorable Ryder Cup victory over Team USA
Ian Poulter
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy celebrates after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Europe's Rory McIlroy holds up the trophy after winning the Ryder Cup PGA golf tournament Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012, at the Medinah Country Club in Medinah, Ill. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Europe's Rory McIlroy, Sergio Garcia and Luke Donald celebrate after winning the Ryder Cup PGA golf tournament Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012, at the Medinah Country Club in Medinah, Ill. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe poses with the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Ian Poulter of Europe hits a shot on the 12th hole during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Darren Clarke and Rory McIlroy during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy of Europe pose with the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Martin Kaymer pose with the Ryder Cup alongside Graeme McDowell and Justin Rose after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy speaks with the media after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy speaks with the media after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Davis Love III addresses the crowd at the closing ceremonies after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy, Darren Clarke and Sergio Garcia celebrate after Team Europe defeats the United States for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Martin Kaymer of Europe celebrates with Rory McIlroy and Peter Hanson after holing the decisive putt on the 18th green during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Members of team Europe celebrate after defeating the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Martin Kaymer (R) and Rory McIlroy celebrate in the locker room after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: (L-R) Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy celebrate in the locker room after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe (L) and Tiger Woods of the USA greet each other on the 18th green after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe celebrates after Martin Kaymer holed the decisive putt on the 18th green during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Jim Furyk of the USA (R) reacts to a missed par putt on the 18th green as Sergio Garcia and the European team celebrate during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Justin Rose (L) and Rory McIlroy of Europe celebrate on the 18th green during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe waves to the gallery on the 17th green during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe celebrates a putt during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy of Europe waves to the gallery on the 17th green during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond receives a ceremonial putter to mark the passing of the Ryder Cup venue to Gleneagles 2014 during the closing ceremony after the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond receives a ceremonial putter to mark the passing of the Ryder Cup venue to Gleneagles 2014 during the closing ceremony after the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Lee Westwood of Europe reacts after making a birdie putt on the 15h hole during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Bubba Watson of the USA waits with his caddie Ted Scott during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: (L-R) Justin Rose, Lee Westwood, Jose Maria Olazabal, Luke Donald and Ian Poulter pose with the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: (L-R) Justin Rose, Lee Westwood, Jose Maria Olazabal, Luke Donald and Ian Poulter pose with the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Graeme McDowell poses with Martin Kaymer and the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy poses with the Ryder Cup after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 30: Rory McIlroy speaks with the media after Europe defeated the USA 14.5 to 13.5 to retain the Ryder Cup during the Singles Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 30, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Kristin Stape and Kate Rose look on during the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley of the USA celebrate on the 17th green with Amy Mickelson and Jillian Stacey after defeating the McIlroy/McDowell team 2&1 during the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Angie Watson (L) and Dowd Simpson watch the play during the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Webb Simpson of the USA rides a golf cart with his wife Dowd during the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Pernilla Bjorn and Kristin Stape watch the play during the Morning Foursome Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Mandy Snedeker (L) and Tabitha Furyk watching the action during the Morning Foursome Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
A model promotes the 2012 Ryder Cup at the Medinah Country Club, Chicago
A model promotes the 2012 Ryder Cup at the Medinah Country Club, Chicago
A model promotes the 2012 Ryder Cup at the Medinah Country Club, Chicago
A model promotes the 2012 Ryder Cup at the Medinah Country Club, Chicago
A model promotes the 2012 Ryder Cup at the Medinah Country Club, Chicago
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 28: Mandy Snedeker (L) and Tabitha Furyk watching the action during the Morning Foursome Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Kristin Stape (L) and Kate Rose attend the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Paul Lawrie's wife Marian Lawrie before the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: USA team players wives and partners walk in during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: L-R: Marian Lawrie, Katie Poulter, Laurae Westwood, Alison Clarke, Graeme McDowell's partner Kristin Stape during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Jordin Sparks sings the national anthem as Davis Love III and Keegan Bradley of the USA look on during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Peter Hanson of Europe poses with his wife Sanna after the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Justin Rose of Europe walks with his wife Kate to the stage at the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Graeme McDowell of Europe poses with his girlfriend Kristin Stape after the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Phil Mickelson' wife Amy Mickelson acknowledges the applause during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Keegan Bradley of the USA with his partner Jillian Stacey during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Matt Kuchar of the USA with his wife Sybi Kuchar during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Webb Simpson of the USA and his wife Dowd attend the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Diane Donald and Pernilla Bjorn attend the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Ally McGinley attends the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Laurae Westwood attends the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Valentina Molinari attends the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Sanna Hanson attends the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Kate Rose attends the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Ian Poulter of Europe and his wife Katie Poulter walk in during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: Donald Trump and his wife Melania attend the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 27: European Team captain Jose Maria Olazabal with the players wives and partners during the Opening Ceremony for the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 27, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Graeme McDowell of Europe and his partner Kristin Stape attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Zach Johnson of the USA and his wife Kim Johnson attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Dustin Johnson of the USA and his partner Amanda Cauder attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Jim Furyk of the USA and his partner Tabitha Furyk attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Jason Dufner of the USA and his wife Amanda Dufner attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Keegan Bradley of the USA and his partner Jillian Stacey attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Lee Westwood of Europe with his wife Laurae Westwood attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: USA team captain Davis Love III and his wife Robin Love attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Graeme McDowell of Europe (L) poses with his girlfriend Kristin Stape and Rory McIlroy (R) for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Paul McGinley of Europe poses with his wife Ally for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Darren Clarke of Europe poses with his wife Alison for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Miguel Angel Jimenez of Europe poses with his girlfriend Susanne Styblo for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Graeme McDowell of Europe poses with his girlfriend Kristin Stape for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Justin Rose of Europe poses with his wife Kate for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Francesco Molinari of Europe poses with his wife Valentina for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Luke Donald of England of Europe poses with his wife Diane for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Ian Poulter of England of Europe poses with his wife Katie for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Paul Lawrie of Europe poses with his wife Marian for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Peter Hanson of Europe poses with his wife Sanna for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LOMBARD, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Thomas Bjorn of Europe poses with his wife Pernilla for a portrait at the Ryder Cup host hotel prior to the start of the 39th Ryder Cup Gala on September 26, 2012 in Lombard, Illinois. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 25: Actress Jessica Biel watches the play of Justin Timberlake during the 2012 Ryder Cup Captains & Celebrity Scramble at Medinah Country Golf Club on September 25, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 25: Actress Jessica Biel (R) watches the play of Justin Timberlake during the 2012 Ryder Cup Captains & Celebrity Scramble at Medinah Country Golf Club on September 25, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 25: Actress Jessica Biel watches the play of Justin Timberlake during the 2012 Ryder Cup Captains & Celebrity Scramble at Medinah Country Golf Club on September 25, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 25: Actress Jessica Biel watches the play of Justin Timberlake during the 2012 Ryder Cup Captains & Celebrity Scramble at Medinah Country Golf Club on September 25, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 25: Actress Jessica Biel watches the play of Justin Timberlake during the 2012 Ryder Cup Captains & Celebrity Scramble at Medinah Country Golf Club on September 25, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Phil Mickelson of the USA and his wife Amy Mickelson attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Matt Kuchar of the USA and his wife Sybi Kuchar attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Webb Simpson of the USA and his wife Dowd Simpson attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Brandt Snedeker of the USA and his wife Mandy Snedeker attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Steve Stricker of the USA and his wife Nicki Stricker attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: The European team players pose for a photograph with their wives and partners prior to the 39th Ryder Cup gala>> at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: European Team captain Jose Maria Olazabal poses for a photograph with the European players wives and partners prior to the 39th Ryder Cup gala>> at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Peter Hanson of Europe and his wife Sanna Hanson attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Paul Lawrie of Europe and his wife Marian Lawrie attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Francesco Molinari of Europe and his wife Valentina Molinari attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Ian Poulter of Europe and his wife Katie Poulter attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
ROSEMONT, IL - SEPTEMBER 26: Justin Rose of Europe and his wife Kate Rose attend the 39th Ryder Cup Gala at Akoo Theatre at Rosemont on September 26, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

The tributes poured in for Ian Poulter. The one that meant the most to him shall forever remain secret. It was delivered by his Ryder Cup captain Jose Maria Olazabal in an emotional embrace by the 18th green.

Olazabal had suggested a statue be erected in tribute to Poulter at the home of the European Tour after yet another eye-popping contribution late on Saturday afternoon, which made Sunday's incredible turnaround possible.



Then Poulter delivered a fourth point on the final day, the highest individual contribution on either side, to reinforce a legend that grows ever greater in the Ryder Cup setting. His face dominated newspaper coverage in America yesterday, further recognition of his defining presence in the European team. He is Europe.



In the euphoria of victory he said he would not trade this success at Medinah for any number of majors. "This is special. You don't get to experience this kind of elation or emotion in regular golf. I love it. It brings out the best in me. Would I want to win a major? Of course I would. Would I swap this win in the Ryder Cup, coming back like we did? No way. This is as good as it gets."



The sense of camaraderie built through shared endeavour clearly touched him but one moment carried significantly greater meaning. "I take away so many special memories from this. But what Jose Maria said to me at the end will stay with me forever. That meant everything to me.



"I can't share it with you, sorry. That remains between us. He is a special person and a great captain. You know what, my captain picked me to come and play. I owe it to him, and Seve [Ballesteros], to be here today."



Poulter accounted for the enraged engagement he brings to the contest in terms of a career-long defiance to prove people wrong, including the scouting staff at Tottenham Hotspur, where he passed through two trials as a schoolboy centre-back without making the grade.



"All my life I've been told I'd never amount to anything. That was always the message from my teachers at school. I wanted to be a footballer, but that didn't work out either. As an Arsenal fan I guess that's a good thing. But, yeah, I just love proving people wrong. It gives me the motivation to succeed."



Of all the voices frothing over Poulter's contribution vice-captain Paul McGinley put it best. "We won that Ryder Cup from [the effort by] Ian Poulter. We were hanging on by our fingernails and Poulter just kept us in touch. It was quite incredible. He's great. He just loves it. He's built this image of himself, of what he is, and he plays to it.



"He's like an actor getting into character. He puts on a costume and turns into this guy. And this guy he creates is awesome in Ryder Cups. He never misses putts and does it when it counts. That's the personality he adopts and it's great."



Mr Europe: Poulter's record



P W L H



Foursomes 5 4 1 0



Fourballs 6 4 2 0



Singles 4 4 0 0



Total 15 12 3 0



Has been on the winning side in three of his four Ryder Cups

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