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Ryder Cup: Who is the greatest golfer in Europe v USA contest?

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Ryder Cup: Who is the greatest golfer in Europe v USA contest?
ryder-cup-who-is-the-greatest-golfer-in-europe-v-usa-contest
A golfer needs all sorts of qualities to be a http://www.redskinsonlineofficialstore.com/ALFRED-MORRIS-JERSEY-CHEAP.html Ryder Cup star - able to sink putts under pressure, fire flawless irons from the fairway, and smoke drives off the tee. Then there are the intangibles - confidence, character and leadership. For one week the solo swingers who tread the globe's greens in a world of their own have to think of others and immerse themselves in the team cause. All this in the maelstrom of matchplay and the backdrop of a raucous crowd in autumnal conditions. Since the biennial clash saw Great Britain & Ireland expanded to become a European team in 1979, some heavyweight names have graced the competition. From Tom Watson and Tiger Woods to Sir Nick Faldo and Rory McIlroy, they have all won and lost. But who is the best? Ahead of the 2014 showdown which starts at Gleneagles on Friday, we asked sports statistician Dr Ian McHale to crunch the numbers and apply a special mathematical model in an attempt to discover the greatest Ryder Cup player. What's the point? Points scored and percentages are often used as ways of measuring performance, but they do not consider other elements. For example, some players might accumulate more points from appearing in many Ryder Cups over a period when there is less competition, while others might shine brightly in fewer contests before having their careers cut short. "During a long career of 11 Ryder Cups, Nick Faldo has accumulated the most points ever (25), but if you work out his points percentage, it is just 54%," said McHale. "Compare this to Ian Poulter, for example who has won 12 points in four Ryder Cups at 80%. Based on their Ryder Cup form - who would win in a head-to-head?" Percentages have their own problems - they don't factor in the quality of the opposition. "One golfer might beat the very best player on the opposing side, while another might defeat the weakest," said the statistician. "Who has done better? Most of us agree it is the man who triumphed against the other team's top player." The formula Our model uses the results of all the fourballs, foursomes and singles J.J. Jansen Kids Jersey matches for every player involved in Ryder Cups since 1979. For the purposes of our final table, they must have played at least 10 Ryder Cup matches. It takes account of the margins of victory, the quality of the opponent, and playing partners in fourballs and foursomes clashes. By doing this, it 'corrects' simpler methods for ranking players which can be inflated (or deflated) by facing relatively weak - or strong - opponents. "When you have lots of results of players, you can work out the relative abilities of all of the players which best describe the results you have observed," said McHale, from the University of Manchester's School Of Mathematics. "This is what we do here. The estimated player abilities should be free of the biases observed in the simpler ranking methods like total points won and points win percentages." Any surprises? In our list of the best Ryder Cup players, American Woods - a 14-time major winner but perceived by many not to be comfortable with the Ryder Cup format - is alongside Englishman Luke Donald. Donald has a 70% points strike rate - 10 wins, four defeats and a half - giving him the joint second best percentage of any player in the last 35 years. Woods has a lower return, at 44% - 13 wins, 17 losses and three halves. Both players are down at 23rd on the McHale model, largely because Woods has played more matches against opponents who have done well in Ryder Cups, while Donald has won more games against lower-rated rivals. Welshman Ian Woosnam is only 43rd despite scoring more fourballs points (10) than any other player in the event's history. He thrived in that format but he could not win a singles match in eight attempts. Perhaps most surprisingly of all, there is no place in the top 10 for Spanish maestro Seve Ballesteros. "Despite Seve being regarded as a trailblazer in terms of Europe turning http://www.officialnflraidersjerseys.com/ART-SHELL-JERSEY-CHEAP.html things around, his actual results [W20 L12 H5] aren't that fantastic," said McHale. "A points percentage of 59% is good, but there are plenty of players with better records. Added to the fact that he wasn't really facing 'great' US players in his matches and he didn't tend to win his matches by big margins, means he is perhaps surprisingly low down the list. "The model doesn't [and couldn't] account for his X factor - his charisma and his leadership qualities."

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