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I See No French Golfers in This Year’s Ryder Cup

 

Ryder Cup logo

Finally, tomorrows clash between Europe and the United States will tee-off at Le Golf National in France. But, have you ever wondered how many famous golfers are from France?

Well, despite your count and their intimate knowledge of the host course Le Golf National’s Albatross course, no French man qualified for this year’s Ryder Cup.

France’s highest-ranked players, the likes of Jean Van de Velde, Raphaël Jacquelin, Grégory Bourdy, Michael Lorenzo-Vera, and Victor Dubuisson didn’t shine bright enough on team Europe captain Thomas Bjorn’s radar.

So, for the first time since the Cup began in 1927, the 42nd Ryder Cup edition host nation will be without a golfer in the competition.

My favorite Frenchman, Victor Dubuisson, who plays on the European Tour, ranked world number 226 seemed destined to be a Ryder Cup superstar. But while Europe's finest prepare for Le Golf National in his homeland, Dubuisson is nulle part où être vu.

This year Dubuisson played just once, missing the cut at the Open de Espana in April. The reason he said: “My eardrum was hit on the plane on the way back from Spain then, back home, it exploded,” in late May. That forced him to have surgery and so can’t fly. 

“I can hit balls but, at the moment of impact, it hurts a lot. Playing would slow down my healing considerably, affecting my balance. I continue to do my ear rehabilitation so I can hear normally.”

“It’s a failure, no doubt,” said Pascal Grizot, president of the France 2018 Ryder Cup Committee. But Grizot and those who have spent years preparing for this tournament did get quite a surprise consolation prize.

That would be Tiger Woods, whose unexpected resurgence this season put him back in the 12-man lineup for the American team as a captain’s pick.

Initially, Woods intended to come to Le Golf National as a nonplaying vice-captain, doing the same cheerleading job he did at the last Ryder Cup in 2016 at Hazeltine National Golf Club. But now he’s coming as a player.