Presidents Cup must emulate Ryder: Price

Fri Aug 28, 2015 3:46pm EDT
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A points change for this year's Presidents Cup is "a move in a positive direction" but long-term the biennial team competition should mirror the format used at the Ryder Cup, says International captain Nick Price.

Earlier this week, the PGA Tour announced that the total number of points on offer at the Presidents Cup will be reduced to 30 from 34 for this year's edition in South Korea, much closer to the 28-point tally competed for at the Ryder Cup.

Three-times major winner Price, whose 12-man team will take on holders the United States at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon from Oct. 8-11, has long argued for a reduction in team matches to aid competitive balance.

"To go from 34 to 30 points is a good change and it's certainly a move in a positive direction," Zimbabwean Price told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"But I, and most of us on the International team, still believe that in years to come it needs to go to 28 points, it needs to mirror the same points structure as the Ryder Cup for it to become more consistently competitive."

In Price's opinion, fewer points give the stronger team less of an advantage as the weakest players do not compete as often, and he believes this would help the Internationals improve a dismal record of just one win against the U.S. in 10 editions.

"I don't think the Ryder Cup would have been as successful if they had had the Presidents Cup format," said Price, a former world number one who competed in five Presidents Cups as a player.

"The Ryder Cup has a proven system that has led to exceptional excitement over the years. They've had the Ryder Cup for nearly 90 years now and they've been through five point changes and one qualification criterion change.   Continued...

International Team captain Nick Price of Zimbabwe carries a two-way radio during the second practice round for the 2013 Presidents Cup golf tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio October 2, 2013.  REUTERS/Jeff Haynes