Meet Your 2008 Ryder Cup Team Captains

KENTUCKY – On September 16th, the golf world will forget about Tiger Woods’ season ending surgery, and will not be able to recall John Daly teeing off atop a beer can, because Tuesday the 16th rings in the 37th biennial Ryder Cup that will take place at the prestigious Jack Nicklaus designed, Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky.

But before we introduce Team USA and Team Europe in entirety (most importantly their WaGs), we find it important to take an appropriate amount of time to get to know each team’s Captain.

Captain Europe: Nicholas Alexander Faldo

The 51 year old England native stands an impressive 6’3″ tall and weights a solid 185 lbs (thats 88 kg for you Euros). After turning pro in 1976, Faldo went on to win 43 professional tournaments, 6 of which were Majors.

While he has proven himself consistent on the fairway, his personal life is about as consistent as Arnold Palmer’s septuple bogey (12) on the par 5 ninth hole at the 1961 LA Open.

Faldo was married to Melanie Rockall for five years until she found out he was having an affair with his manager’s secretary, Gill Bennett.

In 1986 he married Bennett, and with her had three kids: Natalie, Matthew and Georgia. But after nine years, Nick decided he had had enough and ditched Gill for a 20 year old American-Golfing student Brenna Cepelak.

Their three-year affair ended when he met Valerie Bercher, a Swiss PR agent. The angered Brenna Cepelak famously battered Faldo’s Porsche 959 with a golf club, causing roughly $20,000 damage. Faldo’s relationship with Bercher, began in 1998 when they met at the European Masters golf tournament, after which she left her fiance Olivier Delaloye to marry Faldo in July 2001.

Faldo has since divorced Valerie and is actively seeking his next target.

My guess: Tiger Woods’ Swedish wife and mother of two, Elin Nordegren.

Key Comment: Following Faldo’s continuous disregard for his own marital status, Golf World cleverly commented, regarding Greg Norman and his heated rivalry:

Norman has played and won more events: 87-43; however, Faldo has won more US and European tour titles: 36-34. Norman has won more money; Faldo has won more majors: 6-2. Norman has won more friends, Faldo more admirers.”

As a word of warning, I highly suggest all Ryder Cup team members keep an eye on their wives at all times.

Captain United States of America: Paul William Azinger

Azinger was born in Holyoke, Massachusetts. He attended Florida State University and turned professional in 1981, going on to take home 15 professional titles, just one of which was a Major.

He currently lives with his wife, Toni, and daughters, Sarah Jean and Josie Lynn, in their Florida home.

Contextual Keynote: He finished one shot behind opposing captain and winner Nick Faldo in the 1987 Open Championship.

Final thoughts: Despite fighting back from Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, Paul Azinger has led a much less dramatic life. As a Team USA sympathizer, I hope Azinger can keep up with Faldo, who has proven himself quite a player.

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