The Only Oral History of the Ryder Cup
Since Its Genesis in 1927
Us Against Them recounts how the Ryder Cup grew from the brink of extinction to become the most compelling and controversial tournament in golf. The popularity of the Ryder Cup, played every other year in the fall (alternately in the United States and in Europe), has soared in the last ten years. Its worldwide television audience is now the largest of any in golf, and the last tournament, in 2002, was viewed by an estimated 100 million fans.
The story of this meteoric rise -- and all the rich history that predated it -- is told in the actual voices of more than forty players and other participants, including Ryder Cup players and captains Curtis Strange, Dave Stockton, Sam Torrance, and Tony Jacklin; American legends Hale Irwin and Billy Casper; U.S. network television commentators Peter Alliss, David Feherty, Peter Oosterhuis, and Jimmy Roberts; Tour players Peter Jacobsen, Tom Lehman, and Brad Faxon; and such names from the past as Dow Finsterwald, Johnny Pott, and Tommy Bolt.More than recalling simply the play-by-play, Us Against Them also goes behind the scenes -- to the Ryder Cup tournament director whose participation almost ended in his own bloody death, to the matches in Britain that nearly ended in blows, to the car crash that some say decided the outcome of one of the matches, to a small plane carrying players that almost fell from the sky, and to the prominent American network golf commentator who introduced himself to a U.S. president while dressed in a large plastic garbage bag!
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Robin McMillan is editor in chief of Golf Magazine's Custom Publishing Division. Scottish by birth, he has lived in New York City for the past twenty-five years. He is married with two children.From Publishers Weekly:
Culling yarns and personal reflections from several generations of Ryder Cup players and captains, this engrossing oral history tells it like it was by those who were there. Established in the 1920s by the self-made entrepreneur Samuel Ryder to promote the game of golf on both sides of the Atlantic, the Ryder Cup is played not for money but for the honor of representing one's country. McMillan's intimate, anecdotal approach is perfectly suited to capturing the spirit and emotions of this unique event, which has long been distinguished by fierce rivalries and patriotic fervor. All the great moments in Ryder Cup history are here, such as when Jack Nicklaus conceded Tony Jacklin's final putt in 1969 to tie both the match and tournament (in the event of a tie, the Americans would retain the cup they'd won in 1967)—a stirring moment related by Jacklin himself. The many contributors bring a degree of insight and candor that would not have been possible in a standard, third-person account. Although the early years of the tournament are, understandably, recounted in less depth, the book should be avidly read by fans.
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