Hello, Ryder Cup. When did big-time golf events get this loud and rowdy?
As the sun came up over the Whistling Straits course in Wisconsin Friday, the fans broke out into song. And it wasn’t just any song. The Ryder Cup fans belted out Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline. Maybe the mimosas and bloody marys were flowing in the hospitality area.
Listen to the sweet sounds:
The Ryder Cup, like most of big-time golf, is an international event. This weekend, the United States will compete with golfers from Europe for the Ryder Cup. The Covid-19 pandemic postponed the event by a year. So the United States has been waiting a while for a chance at payback since the Americans lost in Paris in 2018.
And why not sing Sweet Caroline before the Friday rounds started. The Neil Diamond classic from 1969 is starting to become an anthem for all sports. Back in July, English soccer fans sang it at Wembley Stadium as they celebrated their team making it to the finals of Euro 2020.
“It’s kind of become like a good-luck charm in this tournament,” Tony Perry, the D.J. at Wembley, told the New York Times.
Neil Diamond Loves Hearing ‘Sweet Caroline’ at Stadiums. Betting He’ll Like Ryder Cup Version, Too.
Neil Diamond enjoyed listening to others sing his signature song.
“I love seeing the joy in the videos,” he told the Times. “Especially after such an isolating year during the pandemic and years of heartbreak.”
We’re betting Diamond will love the early morning scene at the Ryder Cup.
Sweet Caroline is an eighth-inning fixture at Fenway Park in Boston. It has been for almost two decades. Diamond even performed it in person for the Boston Red Sox fans in 2013, a few days after the Boston Marathon bombing.
And you can hear the song at various college venues from Penn State to Oregon State. To think, they’re all singing a love song initially inspired by the daughter of President John F Kennedy.
Friday’s action at the Ryder Cup started bright and early. It’s foursome Friday. Good friends Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth paired up to represent Team USA. They played Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia, the two stars from Spain. Americans Dustin Johnson and Collin Morikawa will take on Paul Casey (England) and Viktor Hovland (Norway).
In other matchups, Brooks Koepka and Daniel Berger from Team USA meet the United Kingdom duo of Lee Westwood and Matt Fitzpatrick. Americans Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele will play Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland) and Ian Poulter (United Kingdom).
The Americans really want to win the Ryder Cup. The Europeans have dominated the action for the past two decades. Team USA has won only twice. Team USA features six players who’ve never competed at the Ryder Cup, so maybe new blood will do the trick. Or maybe singing Sweet Caroline brings the Ryder Cup home.