The surprising value of pars in foursomes at the Ryder Cup
Making par can get you a long way in foursomes at the 2018 Ryder Cup at Le Golf National.
Nearly 30 percent of the holes (34 of 122) played in the Ryder Cup's Friday and Saturday foursomes sessions were won with a par. Across the eight foursomes matches, one of the two pairings in each match won a point on 71 holes, meaning nearly half of the holes that were won, were won with a par.
Forty one other holes were halved with a par, meaning that on roughly 61 percent of the holes making par would – at the very least – be enough to prevent your opponent from gaining a point in the match.
Additionally, Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth won the par-4 4th hole with a bogey on Saturday and two other holes were halved with scores worse than par, including the par-3 2nd hole with a pair of triple-bogeys by Garcia/Noren and Watson/Simpson.
The 8th and 10th holes were the most common holes to be won with a par at six and four "par wins," respectively. The complete list of the number of times a par was the winning score on a hole in foursomes is listed below.
On the other hand, pars aren't nearly as valuable in four-balls. Only six of the 134 holes (4.5 percent) played in the four-ball matches Friday and Saturday were won with a par.
With four of the world's best players each competing with their own ball in every four-ball match, it's rare that the best of the four scores is a par.
However, it's a different story when two players are playing one ball (perhaps a ball they're not used to, too) and alternating shots.
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