Where are they now - Class of 2010
Ten years have passed since Team Europe dramatically regained The Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor Resort.
With the European Tour holding the ISPS HANDA Wales Open at the Newport venue this week, we have taken a look at the paths the members of that team have taken in the decade since.
Colin Montgomerie. Captain.
Ryder Cup record: 8 appearances, 5 wins
The 31-time European Tour winner was awarded the honour of Team Europe Captaincy for the 2010 Ryder Cup following an enviable record as a player in the biennial contest.
In eight playing appearances, the Scotsman helped Team Europe to victory on five separate occasions and still to this day is the only man to hole the winning putt twice (1997 and 2004). He is also unbeaten in Singles matches, with six wins and two halves.
After leading Team Europe to victory, Montgomerie has transferred his successful playing career from the European Tour to the Staysure Tour.
Since turning 50 in 2013, Montgomerie has become a three-time Senior Major Champion and two-time winner of the John Jacobs Trophy for topping the Order of Merit. He has 15 over-50s titles in total, the most recent of which came at the 2019 Invesco QQQ Championship on the US PGA Tour Champions.
2010 record: 2-2-0
Appearing for a final time as a player at The Ryder Cup, after six consecutive appearances on Team Europe, Pádraig Harrington was selected as one of Montgomerie’s picks. Despite defeat in his opening match alongside Donald, the three-time Major winner quickly formed a strong partnership with Rookie Fisher as they went undefeated in the two matches they played together.
Harrington’s experience no doubt helped Fisher in what can be a daunting environment, as the pair picked up a 3&2 victory over Mickelson and Dustin Johnson in the Saturday foursomes session, before again defeating Furyk and Johnson 2&1 in Sunday’s fourball matches.
Since The 2010 Ryder Cup, Harrington has picked up five worldwide victories at the Iskandar Johor Open, PGA Grand Slam of Golf, Bank BRI Indonesia Open, The Honda Classic and most recently at the 2016 Portugal Masters.
The Irishman has made no further appearances as a player since 2010, but will Captain Team Europe at The 2020 Ryder Cup held at Whistling Straits.
2010 record: 3-1-0 (W-L-H)
Englishman Luke Donald was the stand-out player for Team Europe in 2010, winning three points out of four at Celtic Manor Resort.
Donald lost his first match of the contest – playing in the fourballs alongside Padraig Harrington – but then went 3-0 in his next three matches. He won back-to-back foursomes matches with fellow Englishmen Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood, before rounding off his week with a 1-UP victory over Jim Furyk in the Singles.
Donald’s superb performance at The 2010 Ryder Cup acted as a springboard for some the best years of his career. He had four separate spells and spent a total of 56 weeks at World Number One between May 2011 and August 2012.
He took the World Number One spot from Westwood after defeating his compatriot in a play-off at the BMW PGA Championship in May 2011, a title he successfully defended in 2012.
Donald then became the first player to win the money lists on both sides of the Atlantic at the end of an incredible 2011 campaign. He required a victory in the final event of the PGA Tour season and he duly claimed the title to secure the remarkable achievement.
Having previously been part of winning European sides in the 2004 and 2006 Ryder Cups, Donald made it four wins out of four when he earned a place in Jose Maria Olazabal’s side at the 2012 ‘Miracle at Medinah’.
Donald won two vital points for Team Europe on that occasion – a fourballs point as he and Sergio Garcia beat Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker 1-UP on Saturday to begin the swing in momentum before earning Team Europe’s first Singles point with a 2&1 victory over Bubba Watson in the Singles.
Most recently, he joined Team Europe as one of Thomas Bjørn’s vice captains in 2018 at Le Golf National when Team Europe successfully regained The Ryder Cup.
2010 record: 2-1-1
Lee Westwood won 2.5 points out of a possible four when he made his seventh appearance in the biennial contest in 2010.
The Englishman was undefeated in the foursomes and fourballs, picking up 2.5 points out of three with a win against Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson alongside Martin Kaymer and victory against Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker, playing with Luke Donald.
He and Kaymer picked up half a foursomes point against Jim Furyk and Rickie Fowler, before the Englishman slipped to a narrow Singles defeat against Stricker, losing 2&1.
Just a month after helping Team Europe to victory, Westwood reached the summit of the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time. He ended Tiger Wood’s five-year reign at the top and spent a total of 22 weeks at World Number One.
He has won 25 times on the European Tour – only second to Sir Nick Faldo in the list of England’s most prolific winners worldwide – with his most recent victory coming at the 2020 Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA - his second Rolex Series victory. His triumph at Abu Dhabi Golf Club saw him become the first active golfer to win in four difference decades.
Westwood has made three further Ryder Cup appearances since 2010, winning twice, and was also one of Thomas Bjørn’s vice-captains at the 2018 contest at Le Golf National.
2010 record: 2-1-1
Like his playing partner Westwood, Martin Kaymer picked up 2.5 points at Celtic Manor, his first appearance in The Ryder Cup.
His contribution to Team Europe’s tally with a fourballs win against Mickelson and Johnson and a half against Fowler and Furyk in the foursomes preceded a 2&1 victory against Mickelson and Fowler alongside Ian Poulter in the final fourball match before the Singles started.
Despite a 6&4 Singles defeat to D. Johnson, Team Europe secured the Ryder Cup and Kaymer tasted victory in the contest on his first appearance.
His maiden appearance in The Ryder Cup came just a month after he joined golf’s elite by winning the US PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.
The German finished in a two-way tie at 11 under par before defeating Bubba Watson in a three-hole aggregate play-off.
It wasn’t his last Major triumph, however, as he added the U.S. Open to his haul in 2014 with an incredible eight-stroke victory at Pinehurst.
In total, he has 11 European Tour titles to his name which includes the 2011 WGC-HSBC Champions and the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in 2010.
Kaymer became the second German after Bernhard Langer to reach the top of the Official World Golf Ranking in 2011 and spent eight weeks as World Number One.
The German has since enjoyed further Ryder Cup success since making his debut, including holing the winning putt at the Miracle at Medinah in 2012 and making it three wins in a row in 2014 at Gleneagles.
2010 record: 2-1-1
Graeme McDowell. The man who earned Team Europe victory in 2010.
The Northern Irishman’s name will forever be etched into Ryder Cup folklore afterg his achievements at Celtic Manor ten years ago.
Following Miguel Ángel Jiménez’s 4&3 victory over Bubba Watson in the Singles, Europe had opened up a commanding 13-9 lead, however Team USA staged a fightback with 3.5 points coming from their next four matches to tie the contest at 13.5 – 13.5.
That meant it all came down to the final match of McDowell versus Hunter Mahan to decide the outcome of The 2010 Ryder Cup. McDowell holed a momentum-seizing 15-footer for birdie on the 16th hole to go 2-UP in the match before winning The Ryder Cup for Europe with a 3&1 victory on the 17th green.
Prior to the contest in Wales, McDowell had famously ended a 40-year wait for a European winner of the U.S. Open by triumphing at Pebble Beach in 2010. He finished a career-high second in the Race to Dubai in the same year.
The 11-time European Tour winner went on to form part of winning Team Europe sides in both The 2012 and 2014 Ryder Cup, while also assisting Thomas Bjørn in the role of vice-captain at Le Golf National in 2018.
2010 record: 1-1-2
McIlroy took two points from his four games at The Celtic Manor Resort, after forming a productive partnership with fellow Northern Irishman Graeme McDowell. The pair took a half in the opening fourballs against Stuart Cink and Matt Kuchar and, after being pipped one-up by the same pairing in their opening foursomes contest, beat Zach Johnson and Hunter Mahan 3 and 1 before McIlroy halved with Cink in the singles.
Already a star of the sport in 2010, McIlroy's career has gone from strength to strength since. Four major titles and several spells as World Number One have followed, along with three Race to Dubai titles and two FedEx Cup wins.
McIlroy has become an ever-present member of Europe's Ryder Cup side since making his debut, with his points tally currently at 13 after 11 wins and four halves from his 24 matches. Played a key role in the Miracle at Medinah by beating Keegan Bradley in the singles.
2010 record: 2-2-0
Fisher contributed two points to the European cause, with both his wins coming alongside Padraig Harrington. After losing to Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker alongside Ian Poulter on the opening day, Fisher and Harrington beat Phil Micklson and Dustin Johnson in the foursomes before overcoming Johnson and Jim Furyk in the fourballs.
Fisher secured a fifth European Tour title at the Tshwane Open in 2014 – his four previous wins all came before his appearance in south Wales. Fisher has also recorded two top-three finishes in World Golf Championships events.
His 2010 effort remains Fisher's only Ryder Cup appearance to date.
2010 record: 0-1-2
Molinari and his brother Francesco became the first siblings to represent Europe together since Bernard and Geoffrey Hunt in 1968. The Italians halved a fourball match against Stuart Cink and Matt Kuchar and Edoardo added another half point in his singles game against Rickie Fowler.
Having won twice on the European Tour to earn a pick from Colin Montgomerie, Molinari added a third title at the 2017 Trophée Hassan II. A succession of injuries have hampered Molinari's form since 2010 but he has twice successfully regained his playing card at Qualifying School.
Molinari's 2010 appearance remains his only Ryder Cup appearance to date.
2010 record: 0-2-1
Francesco's half alongside his brother proved to be his only points contribution of the week as he was beaten by Tiger Woods in the singles.
Molinari made history in 2018 when he became Italy's first Major winner with a memorable victory at the Open Championship. That helped him secure that year's Race to Dubai title, and there have been six worldwide victories – four of them coming on the European Tour – since 2010.
Since his 2010 debut, Molinari has a further two appearances under his belt as he appeared at the 2012 and 2018 editions of The Ryder Cup. His half in the singles against Woods famously ensured Europe sealed an outright victory in the 2012 Miracle of Medinah after Martin Kaymer had made sure the Ryder Cup would be retained.
In 2018 he formed a formidable partnership with Tommy Fleetwood, the pair winning all four games together at Le Golf National, before beating Mickelson in the singles to not only ensure Europe would retain The Ryder Cup, but also becoming the first European player to secure a 5-0-0 Ryder Cup record.
Miguel Ángel Jiménez
2010 record: 2-1-0
Jiménez took two points from three appearances at Celtic Manor, partnering Sweden's Peter Hanson to a point against Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton in the fourballs before securing a 4&3 victory over Watson in the singles.
Since his 2010 appearance, Jiménez has won three European Tour titles – the first making him the tour's oldest winner and his subsequent victories extending his record. Despite still being competitive on the regular tour, he has also enjoyed success in the senior ranks, winning two Senior Majors in 2018. The Spaniard also became the European Tour’s all-time leading appearance maker (707) recently after his appearance at the Hero Open.
Jimenez's fourth Ryder Cup appearance in 2010 is currently his latest, although he was a Vice Captain in 2012 and 2014.
2010 record: 3-1-0
Ian Poulter sat alongside Donald as the highest points returner at The 2010 Ryder Cup after winning three of his four matches. After defeat on the opening day alongside Ross Fisher, Poulter would go on to win his remaining three matches.
The singles matches also saw the birth of Poulter’s ‘Postman’ nickname after he said in a live interview before his singles match that he will deliver a point for Europe. And, true to his word, Poulter did just that when he defeated Matt Kuchar 5&4.
Since then, the Englishman has been victorious five times worldwide, including wins at UBS Hong Kong Open, Volvo World Match Play Championship, JBWere Masters and WGC-HSBC Champions, with his latest victory coming at the 2018 Houston Open on the PGA Tour where he defeated Beau Hossler in a playoff.
Poulter has made three appearances since The 2010 Ryder Cup and has lived up to his ‘Postman’ nickname as he has finished on the winning side in all of those further appearances (2012, 2014 and 2018).
2010 record: 1-2-0
The 2010 Ryder Cup was Peter Hanson’s first appearance as part of Team Europe, qualifying in the final spot on the European Points List. The Swedish golfer would play three matches this week, returning one point for the European cause when he and Miguel Angel Jimenez defeated Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton by two holes.
Hanson has since enjoyed further success on the European Tour as he claimed both the KLM Open and the BMW Masters in 2012, as well as recording his best finishes at the Majors in the two years following The 2010 Ryder Cup. These were T3 at the Masters Tournament (2012), T7 at the US PGA Championship (2012), T7 at the U.S. Open (2011) and T23 at the 141stOpen Championship (2012).
The six-time European Tour winner would make one further Ryder Cup appearance in 2012.