‘I was Ryder Cup vice-captain – we had 72 wine bottles before final day and won’

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    Former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley has explained how he and his Team Europe team-mates managed to drink 72 bottles of wine the night before winning the competition on US soil.

    Facing off against a team featuring the likes of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, McGinley and co produced a stellar three days of golf at Oakland Hills, dispatching Team USA 18 1/2 – 9 1/2, back in 2004. The monster defeat is the biggest the USA have endured at the hands of Team Europe.

    On Friday, the 44th iteration of the Ryder Cup is set to get underway at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Italy, with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm and Viktor Hovland all vying to avenge Europe's 2021 defeat at Whistling Straits. However, while McIlroy has attended one of his friends stag do's prior to the competition, it seems certain the Northern Irishman and his team-mates will be involved in heavy boozing sessions, unlike McGinley and Team Europe back in 2004.

    READ MORE: Team Europe put USA to shame with mammoth £24,000 bar bill after winning Ryder Cup

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    Speaking to Golf Today earlier this month, McGinley, who also captained Team Europe to Ryder Cup success in 2014, explained how he and his team-mates had consumed so much wine on the Saturday night before their 2004 win, that the bar staff at Oakland Hills actually had to go out and order more booze in for them to drink.

    "Also, the world has changed a bit too," McGinley said. "I mean back in our day, there was quite a bit of alcohol consumed, I think it's fair to say. Even during Ryder Cups!

    Who do you think will win the Ryder Cup out in Rome? Let us know in the comments section below.

    "I was amazed when I was captain in 14', nobody drank. I mean, nobody. It wasn’t like, ‘It’s a Ryder Cup, I’m not going to drink.’ It was a case of, ‘No, I’m not drinking, I don’t drink when I play. It was not even a question.

    "Whereas I remember when we won by a record margin back at Oakland Hills under Bernhard Langer, I remember one of the backroom staff telling us on a Saturday night, so this was before the Sunday… we had consumed 72 bottles of wine already on Saturday night, and they had to go and re-order.

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    "It’s not like we were getting drunk every night — far from it. But everyone would have had one, two, maybe three glasses of wine at night and it was normal. And nine, 10 out of the 12 players would do that. Obviously, it's a changed atmosphere now."

    • Ryder Cup
    • Golf

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