Who has made the most Ryder Cup appearances for Europe?
Earning a place in the Ryder Cup team is the ultimate accolade for European golfers, with only a select group of players ever experiencing the drama that comes with playing in the transatlantic contest. But who has made the most Ryder Cup appearances for Europe?
Sir Nick Faldo has made more Ryder Cup appearances than any other European player, with the Englishman competing in 11 consecutive matches from 1977-1997.
He formed an integral part of the team for over two decades, winning 25 career points for Team Europe - a tally surpassed only by all-time leading points scorer, Sergio Garcia, in 2018.
Faldo got his Ryder Cup career off to a flying start in his debut appearance in 1977, despite the Great Britain & Ireland team suffering a 12.5 - 7.5 defeat, winning all three of his matches including a 1up victory over American Tom Watson.
The tournament marked the last time Great Britain & Ireland competed in the Ryder Cup before the selection process was expanded to include players from continental Europe.
Despite holding a win percentage of 73.33 percent (11-4-0) during his first three contests, Faldo needed to wait until the 1985 match at The Belfry, England, to taste European victory.
The historic win marked the first time that Team Europe prevailed in the contest and was followed by the iconic 1987 match at Muirfield Village in Ohio, where the away team celebrated the first European victory on American soil.
Faldo played an integral role in the latter, forming an undefeated partnership with Ian Woosnam in both the foursomes and fourball matches to finish the match as joint top-points scorer.
The 1987 victory came in the same year that Faldo won the first of his six Major titles at the Open Championship and was the start of a period that is widely considered to be the best years of his career.
After the 1989 contest ended in stalemate and following two defeats in 1991 and 1993, the European team were desperate to come out on top at Oak Hill Country Club in 1995 and they did exactly that, securing only their second victory on away soil 14.5 - 13.5 points.
Faldo was selected by European captain Bernard Gallacher to compete in his tenth consecutive contest and demonstrated why he deserved his pick, defeating Curtis Strange on the final green to earn a vital point in the Sunday singles.
His final appearance came under Seve Ballesteros’ unforgettable captaincy at Valderrama in 1997, where Europe clinched another 14.5 -13.5 victory in the first match to be played in continental Europe.
While Faldo suffered a 3&2 defeat in his final singles match, he did pick up two vital points in the afternoon foursomes on day one and in the morning four balls on day two, both alongside Lee Westwood.
By the end of his Ryder Cup career, Faldo could boast 25 points from 23 victories and four halves – a points record that would stand for 21 years - making him one of Europe’s most successful players at the biennial event and the most capped in European history.