Francesco Molinari, Tommy Fleetwood, and Ian Poulter led wild celebrations after Europe wrestled the Ryder Cup trophy away from the United States in a truly dominant fashion.
Team USA was only ahead once throughout the week, when it recorded a 3-1 win after the morning fourballs session had finished on Friday.
But ever since, Europe mercilessly battered its opponents— opponents who were pre-tournament favourites before a ball had even been struck.
In the end, the status of favourites mattered little. Europe overturned the morning deficit by winning eight matches in a row, looking invincible in Friday’s afternoon foursomes session, and in Saturday morning’s fourballs session. On Saturday afternoon, the United States managed to stop the rot by drawing the foursomes 2-2.
But with a 10-6 lead before Sunday’s singles session, Europe only needed 4.5 points to guarantee the win. And after the day was over, the score was 17.5 to 10.5.
It was a victory as massive for the Europeans, as it was humiliating for the Americans, and it inspired wild celebrations as Molinari — unbeaten all week, winning a maximum of five points — took a beer shower when he broke through the barrier to cuddle his fans.
Fleetwood, Molinari’s excellent partner during the group sessions on Friday and Saturday, grabbed an England flag and crowd-surfed, before getting carried away by security.
And Poulter, Europe’s go-to motivator, dressed up as a British post box. Why? Because he always delivers in the Ryder Cup.
This is the moment supporters chucked their beer all over Molinari:
Here’s Fleetwood on the shoulders of security staff:
And here’s Poulter, beating his chest, inside a post box:
Europe was not short of Ryder Cup heroes this year.
Molinari returned an unblemished record and even sunk the putt that guaranteed the trophy would change hands.
But, by beating Rickie Fowler on Sunday, Sergio Garcia became the all-time leading point scorer in Ryder Cup history. Garcia’s victory moved him to 25.5 career points, half a point more than Nick Faldo.
Once victory for Europe was confirmed, a huge crowd gathered around the 18th green…
… to watch Europe captain Thomas Bjørn lift the Ryder Cup trophy aloft, in front of a raucous Garcia, an excitable Rory McIlroy, and a jubilant team in general.