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Rory McIlroy celebrates topless in kilt and ginger wig at epic Ryder Cup afterparty with Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood

Rory McIlroy showed his Ryder Cup teammates how to party hard last night - though perhaps not in style - donning a tartan kilt and ginger wig.

The Northern Irishman was pictured topless and looking a little worse for wear alongside Scotland's more respectfully dressed Stephen Gallagher in a photograph that went viral on Instagram and Twitter.

It has become tradition for the US and European rivals to celebrate the end of the Ryder Cup together.

And while this year's afterparty looked epic, it's the first time we've been let in on what goes on behind closed doors thanks to the golfing stars sharing pictures on social media.

Rory got the party started a little prematurely when he popped his Champagne cork by accident on the green, making Graeme McDowell jump before bursting into laughter.

Even the post-match press conference was bedlam, with the Europeans swaggering to their seats clutching beer bottles, an ice bucket and their home countries' flags.

Hunter Mahon later tweeted a picture of Rickie Fowler and Bubba Watson being good sports about the USA's defeat, dressed in red tartan kilts and wigs, with the words "What just happened?"

And McDowell today shared a cheeky picture of he and Lee Westwood with a pair of police officers, joking: ""Not saying @WestwoodLee and myself got in any trouble last night..... #sorryofficer".

When asked this morning about USA's Phil Mickelson criticising captain Tom Watson, McIlroy said: 'We had a great time with the American team last night'

'They seemed in good spirits. Tom wasn't there, he didn't really hang around too much. It was unfortunate."

The world number one meanwhile insisted he is not the new Ryder Cup king-maker, but appreciates that his voice was heard.

Along with Luke Donald and Ian Poulter, four-time major winner McIlroy put his full support behind Paul McGinley when the European captaincy for Gleneagles was being decided in January 2013.

McGinley received widespread praise from both within and outside the team for the way he handled preparations and the event itself as he guided Europe to a 16 1/2 to 11 1/2 win over the United States.

Attention is already turning towards who will lead the side at Hazeltine in 2016 and while McIlroy will offer his views he played down the significance of his support.

"I wouldn't say I am a king-maker but I feel like my opinion and view is listened to," he said.

"I wanted to throw all my support behind Paul because I thought this would be his only chance to do it and I knew there was no better candidate and I'm glad he proved me right this week."

McGinley's methods of inclusivity and meticulous attention to detail were appreciated by the players and contrasted starkly with that of the United States.

America's most experienced player Phil Mickelson opened a rift at the post-event press conference after criticising the management of Tom Watson - sat just a couple of yards away - saying the players were never consulted on any decisions which were made.

McIlroy felt McGinley got his approach just right as communication with the team was vital.

"Of course it is, you have to make sure your players are comfortable," he added. "We had a great team meeting on Saturday evening about where we wanted to play and what order we wanted to go out in.

"Paul said 'If anyone is not happy with this we'll change it, we'll figure it out', so every decision this week that has been made the vice-captains and players have all been involved in.

"I know he has lived and breathed the Ryder Cup for the last two years and has made sure everything has gone right and gone to plan. I hope it is something that future European captains can go on with, it is a template to follow.

"As Paul said all week he didn't want to reinvent the wheel he just wanted to enhance it and that is what he did. I am probably a little biased but I'd say he was the best captain (in McIlroy's three Ryder Cups).

"I played under Paul at the Seve Trophy and I had a great week there and I think Paul took a lot from Bernhard Langer's captaincy at Oakland Hills (in 2004) and he put a lot of his principles into his captaincy: very German, very efficient and meticulous.

"I don't think anyone on this team could criticise in any way anything he did this week."

By comparison Watson's approach appeared to be muddled and confused and did not seem to follow any set plan.

He played Mickelson and Keegan Bradley twice on Friday and not at all on Saturday but admitted afterwards he should probably have put them out on the second day rather than benching them for both sessions.

Europe had no such issues but McIlroy said they did not know or care what was happening inside their opponents' locker room.

"The first two days it is all about chemistry but Paul said to us going into the singles 'Just get back to being your selfish selves' - and that's what golfers are, it is an individual game," he added. "He said 'Don't care about any of the other guys in the singles, just go out and win your point. That is the best way to contribute to the team'.

"We really didn't pay attention to what was going on in the American team or how the dynamic was, we were just concentrating on ourselves. All I know is the European team really enjoyed themselves; we had an unbelievable captain in Paul McGinley and that really helped and brought us together.

"We knew we had solid pairings and solid partnerships and we knew if we did our job that is all we could control. The way we won was very satisfying."

Read more:

Incredible duo of Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy swings Ryder Cup for Europe 

Battler Graeme McDowell leads the way with Ryder Cup performance

McGinley not swayed by Darren Clarke rift

Paul McGinley insists his strained relationship with Darren Clarke will not influence his opinion on who should be Europe's next Ryder Cup captain.

Clarke is odds-on favourite to lead the side at Hazeltine in 2016, when Europe will be looking to claim their fourth straight victory and ninth in the last 11 contests.

The former Open champion sent McGinley a letter in 2011 offering his support for the latter's bid to become captain in 2014, but later changed his mind and also put himself forward for the role.

And when Tom Watson was named US captain in December 2012, Clarke suggested 2010 captain Colin Montgomerie should also be considered as "whoever it is standing on that stage opposite Tom Watson needs a huge presence".

With the public backing of players such as Rory McIlroy, Luke Donald and Ian Poulter, McGinley subsequently won the day but admitted recently that his conversations with Clarke were now "short and sweet" and amounted to little more than passing pleasantries.

However, the 47-year-old vowed to be professional when the new selection process gets under way.

Since 1999, the captain was selected by the European Tour's 15-strong tournament committee, but changes announced in August last year mean the responsibility now falls to the previous three captains (McGinley, Jose Maria Olazabal and Montgomerie), the Tour's chief executive and a tournament committee representative.

Asked by Press Association Sport if his relationship with Clarke would be a problem, McGinley said: "Absolutely no problem whatsoever. I'm going to be very professional in my input.

"I'm going to get opinions from a lot of players and a lot of people before I put my opinion forward as to what it will be. Just like I was very much pushed over the line by the players, I want to get the opinion of the players.

"I think we're very fortunate in Europe, a little bit like the Liverpool soccer team and the boot room, I think a lot of us have benefited hugely from being vice-captains. Darren has been a vice-captain along with many other guys. We will see where that all evolves and I'll make a professional decision based on the views of people that I respect."

As to whether he would be a vice-captain under Clarke, McGinley added: "I don't think I'd be vice-captain to anybody going forward to be honest. I'm very happy to help in an unofficial capacity but I don't think I have the personality to go back in as vice-captain.

"I would like to be able to support the new captain in whatever direction he went, and if I had a belief about a different area, I'm afraid there would be a conflict."

That means McGinley's Ryder Cup career is officially over, a career which has seen three wins as a player (2002, 2004 and 2006), two as a vice-captain (2010 and 2012) and one as captain.

"That's six I have been involved in and six wins," he said. "Like a heavyweight fighter, I will retire undefeated."

Undefeated but perhaps not uninvolved, McGinley raising the possibility of using his expertise in the same way he got former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson to speak to the team on Tuesday.

"I would certainly like to play a role, if required, a little bit like Alex Ferguson did this week for me," he added. "I bounced ideas off him. He didn't preach to me. He didn't tell me what to do, but what he did was he solidified my ideas and he gave me confidence that, yeah, my hunches were right.

"I certainly won't be pushing myself forward (but) whoever the next captain may be, if he has any questions, I'll help in any single way I can."

McGinley admitted his one regret at Gleneagles was not having enough time to coach Ian Poulter in the role of senior player for his partnership with Stephen Gallacher, the untried duo losing 5&4 on the opening morning.

But he praised Poulter for accepting his somewhat limited role during the week, the top European points scorer in each of the previous three contests playing just twice before the singles.

"I had to make some tough calls, really tough calls," added McGinley, who said his decision not to pick Luke Donald as a wild card was still eating away at him; Donald sending McGinley a long text of congratulations on Sunday evening.

"All along I had thought that Ian Poulter was going to play in the second afternoon, and he thought he was going to play, and at the 11th hour I decided on Martin Kaymer instead and to break up that dynamic of Poulter and (Justin) Rose which has been so successful. That was a big call.

"But the way Ian accepted that decision, I mean, he came out to me on the golf course in the afternoon and he was consoling me. That means more to me than the Ian Poulter banging on his heart and what he did in Medinah."

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