Keegan Bradley had a Tour Championship to forget, but the New England native put a disappointing finish to the end of the FedEx Cup series behind him as he took to Twitter to voice his enthusiasm for the next item on his busy 2012 schedule — this week’s Ryder Cup.
“It’s FINALLY Ryder cup time!! #USA” Bradley tweeted on Sunday, after carding a final-round 4-over 74 at East Lake, which dropped him to 7-over for the tourney and into a tie for 23rd out of 30 players. He also ended up 21st in the season-ending FedEx Cup points race.
But now it’s on to Medinah Country Club for the biennial tilt between Bradley’s U.S. squad and Team Europe, led by world No. 1 Rory McIlroy. The three-time PGA Tour winner told the Chicago Tribune he could not wait for the steaming cauldron of competition that will be his introduction to the Ryder Cup.
“When I get into those moments — intense, serious moments — I really love it,” said Bradley, who added the 2012 Bridgestone Invitational title to a resume that included last year’s PGA Championship. “I really enjoy that Sunday back-nine feel.”
Should one need any proof of Bradley’s ability to step on his opponents’ throats (a much sought-after skill in the intense international matches), Bradley rebounded from a horrific triple bogey in the final round to win in a playoff the first major he ever started.
Bradley is one of four tour golfers — including Sunday’s Tour Championship and FedEx Cup winner Brandt Snedeker — who will make their Ryder Cup debuts for the home team starting Friday in Chicago. We’ll soon see if they can shoulder the burden of the American’s hopes to capture the cup from their European counterparts.
After all, grizzled vets like Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, and Steve Stricker have been able to muster only two wins in the previous eight contests — leading Johnny Miller to state what many may have been wary of saying aloud.
“Historically, we suck at the Ryder Cup,” the outspoken NBC analyst recently opined.
Miller also said he looked forward to seeing what the “young blood” could do to reverse the United States’ losing ways.
Count Bradley as up for the challenge.
“I’ve prepared to do this my whole life,” Bradley, 26, told the Tribune. “And now that I’ve got a chance to be there, I feel ready to play well.”