Everyone is super psyched about next week's Ryder Cup, especially me as a tipster from a betting standpoint.

Currently USA are favourites at 1.8/1 with Europe at 2.37/1 with a whole myriad of match betting yet to emerge when the pairings are announced.



I'm intrigued as the how important a role stats will play in the matches and already it seems that according to historical numbers, that both Captains missed the chance to get one up on the other by wrongly choosing experienced players as their wildcard picks.

I came across this excellent piece by Jack Green going through the numbers.

Recent history would suggest, however, that the captain has made a mistake by not finding room for an in-form rookie.

Of Europe’s four most successful sets of wildcards, three had a player making his Ryder Cup debut.

That five rookies already occupy automatic places could explain Bjorn’s decision not to take another, but the 2016 Ryder Cup proved that inexperience is not a good enough reason to leave out a young golfer in fine form.

At Hazeltine, Darren Clarke selected rookie Thomas Pieters, and the Belgian top-scored with four points from five matches.

Rafael Cabrera-Bello, another rookie who had earned his place automatically, delivered two wins and a half from his three matches.

Meanwhile, Clarke’s other picks – veterans Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer – earned just one point from a possible seven between them.

Bjorn should have taken a risk this time around and given Matt Wallace a chance.

The 28-year-old’s Made in Denmark victory was his third of the season on the European Tour, and August winners have a fine track record at the Ryder Cup.

In 2016, for example, Pieters triumphed in Denmark two days before he was included in Clarke’s wildcard picks, and was Europe’s best player at Hazeltine.

Clarke controversially left out Russell Knox, who had just won the Travelers Championship and climbed into the world top 20, in favour of Westwood, who failed to score a point.

Here's an infographic to back it up.



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