Jersey City - The United States polished off a 19-11
Presidents Cup win on Sunday over a battling International team whose fate was
sealed over three punishing prior days.
Victory was in the bag when Daniel Berger went 3-up with
three to play against South Korean Kim Si-Woo - assuring himself of at least
half a point to go with the half-point gained by Kevin Chappell against Marc
Leishman in the first match of the day.
By the time Berger wrapped up his 2 & 1 victory over
Kim, victories for Aussie Jason Day and Japan's Hideki Matsuyama were
irrelevant and it was certain that US President Donald Trump would be
presenting the trophy to the home side on Sunday evening.
Trump arrived at Liberty National Golf Club - which lies in
the shadow of the Statue of Liberty some 30 miles from his home at his Trump
National Bedminster resort - just in time to see the Americans seal the win.
He watched from the glass-walled clubhouse at the 14th
green, before becoming the first sitting US president to present the trophy.
"What a feeling," said Berger, who was informed by
US captain Steve Stricker at the 16th that the United States had clinched it.
The Americans set themselves up for a stress-free Sunday by
thrashing the internationals over 18 foursomes and fourball matches - allowing
them just two wins over the first three days.
The US led by 11 points overnight and needed just a point on
Sunday to claim a seventh straight Cup.
"They came in here riding a ton of momentum and a ton
of confidence," Stricker said of his players, who included the winners of
the last three major championships. "It was about getting out of their
World number one Dustin Johnson halved his final match with
South African Branden Grace long after the Cup was decided.
"It was really weird being out there today, like
knowing there was no chance of losing," Johnson said. "I don't know
how to explain it but it was like I was playing golf with my buddies or
Patrick Reed also felt the lack of the usual Sunday
"It was different but at the same time it was kind of
satisfying," he said, "because of how well we played leading into
The Internationals, who won their only title back in 1998
and played to a draw in 2003, were hoping for more after a narrow defeat in
South Korea two years ago.
"This team had more buzz going for it at the start of
this week than any other team I've ever been on," said International
captain Nick Price. "We thought we had a great game plan, but
unfortunately it just didn't pan out for us."
In the end their only satisfaction was denying the US bid to
become the first team to win every session.
The Internationals won six matches on Sunday and halved
Price admitted his team "had our noses rubbed in it
this week" but praised their rebound on Sunday, which assistant captain
Ernie Els showed "serious character".
World number three Matsuyama, noticeably out-of-sorts over
the first three days, produced a 3 & 1 victory over US star Justin Thomas -
who out-gunned him in the final round of the PGA Championship in August.
Jhonattan Vegas of Venezuela defeated British Open champion
Jordan Spieth 2 & 1 - Spieth's third singles defeat in three Presidents Cup
Among the US winners on the final day, five-time
major-winner Phil Mickelson downed Canadian Adam Hadwin 2 & 1 in his 100th
match for the United States in Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup play.