Off the back of three successive defeats, the United States Ryder Cup Taskforce decided to shake up their selection process ahead of the 2016 Matches at Hazeltine in an attempt to reverse their recent fortune in the event.
In order to form the strongest team with the most in-form players as possible, it was decided that Captain Davis Love III would choose his four Captain’s Picks closer to the competition.
This allowed those outside the automatic spots the chance to impress the Captain with some strong performances in the lead up to the all-important week.
With the contest set to get underway on September 30, Love made three selections on September 11, then two weeks later he announced Ryan Moore as his final captain’s pick during half-time of the Sunday night NFL game, five days before the opening day in Minnesota.
Moore was riding the wave of a late surge through the PGA Tour’s Play-offs with two top-tens and a share of second place at The Tour Championship where he lost out to Rory McIlroy in a play-off.
Those performances saw him play his way onto Love’s team and he let Moore – and the world – know within hours of the final round finishing at East Lake.
Moore met up with his teammates the following morning to start the bonding process.
On the opening day he partnered JB Holmes but they came unstuck against the all-Spanish pair of Sergio Garcia and Rafa Cabrera Bello.
The following day the duo would get a deserved point in the fourball against Lee Westwood and Danny Willett, as the US built a 9½ – 6½ lead heading into the singles.
Moore was sent out in the seventh match against Westwood and the writing was on the wall for Europe after a sea of early red points.
With victory in reach it was the rookie’s honour to deliver the winning point on the 18th green against Westwood.
Moore went 2-1-0 as the Americans celebrated their first victory since the 2008 matches at Valhalla, and with a margin of 17 – 11 their biggest win since 1981.
“It was an amazing experience to be part of that team and to actually help the team out and get a couple points,” said Moore, who described every part of Ryder Cup action as playing the 72nd hole of a tournament in a share for the lead.
“Coming down the stretch, and in those kind of circumstances, I think it can definitely help how I’m going to feel in those situations knowing I’ve been there and I’ve handled it in that type of situation,” said Moore.
“But I don’t think it’s changed me as a golfer or my perspective on things. I think it kind of makes you maybe just a little bit more comfortable with that type of pressure, really.”
Five-time PGA Tour winner Moore is currently ranked 65th in the qualification race for this year’s matches, which remain scheduled for September 25th at Whistling Straits.