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Snory Rory cops big slice of luck

It was the Yanks who helped our hero!

By Karl MacGinty

Published 02/10/2012

Rory McIlroy celebrates with the Ryder Cup after Europe performed a spectacular comeback to beat the USA
Rory McIlroy celebrates with the Ryder Cup after Europe performed a spectacular comeback to beat the USA
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 decision that won the Ryder Cup for Europe wasn't taken on the golf course or in the locker-room but on the forecourt of the team's Chicago hotel at 11.00 on Sunday morning.

It was made by Rory McIlroy when he chose to leap into the passenger seat of a high-powered police car instead of the civilian SUV which was waiting to rush him to Medinah Country Club for his singles match with Keegan Bradley.

In that panic-stricken split-second, McIlroy took the option which ensured he would make the 13-mile journey in time to tee it up against Bradley.

Had he travelled in the Ryder Cup courtesy car, McIlroy certainly would have become snagged in traffic on the congested approach roads to Medinah.

So the crucial point he contributed to Europe's 14.5 to 13.5 victory, and the morale-boost of winning all of the first five singles matches, would have been lost to Jose Maria Olazabal's team.

Credit for getting the Holywood man through the traffic and crowds teeming into Medinah for the Ryder Cup climax has gone to Pat Rollins, the deputy chief at Lombard Police Department.

Rollins made full use of the siren and flashing red and blue lights on his police car, plus the super-charged V8 engine under the bonnet to get McIlroy to the course in around 10 minutes.

Yet Rollins isn't the only American hero of this incredible Ryder Cup tale.

Maggie Budzar and Erica Stoll, two young ladies who work as transport officials for the PGA of America, deserve as much credit for helping to save the day for McIlroy and European golf.

As she checked off her list of the players from both teams to be transported from the hotel to the course, Maggie noticed there was no tick alongside McIlroy's name in her log.

So she checked with Erica, her counterpart at Medinah Country Club, to see if the world No 1 had travelled with someone else. When word came back that he hadn't, the two young ladies, both in their 20s, raised the alarm.

“It was 10.30. I knew JP (Fitzgerald, McIlroy's caddie) had left about an hour earlier,” Maggie explained. “I also knew Rory's tee time was 11.25 and that he was in the third group to go off ... and we still hadn't seen him!”

Ms Stoll knew a lot more than McIlroy at that point. When he checked the tee times on the Golf Channel website the previous evening, he failed to notice that they were given in Eastern Standard Time — an hour ahead of Chicago.

So McIlroy, believing he was due to his opening drive at 12.25, was upstairs in his room, blissfully unaware that anything was amiss.

Unlike other elite sports teams, Ryder Cup golfers don't travel together by coach to the venue. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, they all have different tee times and, secondly, they also have different practice routines.

While McIlroy considers 40 minutes to be a long warm-up, the fastidious Padraig Harrington spends two hours or even more preparing for a round.

As every team member is an experienced, successful professional and operates to his own tried and trusted pre-round routine, no Ryder Cup captain would consider interfering with this in the week of such a massive event — especially when so many other facets of their regular tournament routines are disrupted by the social commitments the teams must fulfil at the Ryder Cup.

So officials keep an eye on the comings and goings of the players in their care, just to make sure nobody gets missed.

“I tag-team with my colleagues at the course,” Ms Stoll continued, “checking the players in and out. I knew everyone who was walking out of the hotel.

“There was a huge crowd here waiting to photograph the players so everyone knew he hadn't come down yet. In fact, they were getting antsy, asking where he was so I just lied and said he'd already left.

“Then I started getting worried that something had happened to him or that he had taken a different ride to the course, so I checked with the hotel and they said maybe he was on the players' floor.”

Interestingly, Ms Stoll recounts: “There was only one room still in use when housekeeping checked and a male voice said not to come in. We figured it had to be him because by now we knew he wasn't at the course. I called the guys at the driving range to see if they had seen him. They hadn't so I called the European Tour officials to alert them. We then had someone go up to his room.

“At first, I was going to drive him to Medinah because I knew the way and we didn't want to put a volunteer under stress in the courtesy car and make a wrong turn or something like that.

“I then asked a police officer (deputy chief Rollins) at the front if he could take him with the flashing lights on and he said that'd be okay.

“I gave Rory the choice and he went straight to the front seat of the officer's car. There was a sense of panic by then. He was on the phone saying to someone he thought his tee time was 12.25. He was walking really fast. Security blocked the people off and he got there in 10 minutes.”

McIlroy revealed that he'd been talking on the phone to his agent Conor Ridge at that time. Explaining that he'd been awake since 9.00, when he had made a phone call to his girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki, McIlroy said he had received a couple of calls at 10.30 ... but because they were from “a strange number”, he didn't answer them.

“I was walking out my hotel room door at 11.0 when Conor rang and asked “are you at the golf course yet?”. When I told him I was still at the hotel, he said “You're teeing off in 25 minutes!

“I said ‘no I'm not, I'm off at 12.25'. So Conor says at that point ‘Rory, are you taking the p*ss?' I assured him I wasn't and he said 'well, you'd better get here'.”

McIlroy admitted he'd never endured such a panic-stricken trip to a golf course. Missing that tee time by five minutes would have required him to forfeit the point to Bradley, an option he can't bear even to thing about.

Asked if he could imagine if, as a result, Europe lost by a point, he confessed: “I don't want to. I don't think I'd ever be able to forgive myself if I let down my team-mates and the captain in that way.

“I'm glad I made it with 10 minutes to spare; won my point for the team and we ended-up winning.”

With victory achieved, Europe should now toast an American cop and two of his diligent young compatriots along with its Ryder Cup history-makers.

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