Report cards: International Presidents Cup team

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USA

INT

Byeong Hun An (1-2-2)

Grade
B+

Skinny: A late arrival to the team as a replacement for Jason Day, his performance was stellar and he played all five matches because of that. Lost some of that momentum by Sunday and lost to Webb Simpson when his team needed him.


Abraham Ancer (3-1-1)

Grade
A

Skinny: The rookie shined all week even in his singles loss to Tiger Woods. “I knew going into this match, no matter the outcome, I was just going to come out of there a better player,” he said. Els expected a big week out of Ancer and he didn’t disappoint, tying Sungjae Im as the team’s top points-earner.


Adam Hadwin (1-1-1)

Grade
C+

Skinny: The Canadian was slowed by illness and dropped a big point to the U.S. team during Friday foursomes play, but he rallied for a half-point Sunday against Bryson DeChambeau to keep the International team’s hopes alive.


Sungjae Im (3-1-1)

Grade
A

Skinny: With seven rookies on his team, Els needed production from his young players and Im produced, tying the mark for the most points earned by an International player. Was one of only two players on his team to win singles.


Marc Leishman (1-2-2)

Grade
C-

Skinny: Perhaps he put too much pressure on himself to perform in front of the Aussie crowds, but simply put, he needed to play better in key situations. The Internationals, and captain Els, expected more out of its veterans overall.


Haotong Li (0-2-0)

Grade
F

Skinny: Li was supposed to be a big part of the young and fearless International team, but instead was missing for most of the week. He sat out the first two sessions and only played on single team match on Saturday morning, then was rolled Sunday by Dustin Johnson in an unfair fight.


Grade
B+

Skinny: Considering his previously poor record in the matches Royal Melbourne was a step in the right direction, but his Sunday collapse was costly. Playing in the day’s second match out he built a 4-up lead over Tony Finau through 10 holes but played his final eight holes in 4 over par to tie the match.


Joaquin Niemann (0-3-1)

Grade
C-

Skinny: It was probably unrealistic for Els to expect big things from all of his rookies, but the captain needed more from Niemann. He lost the team’s only match Thursday, allowed the U.S. side to turn a point Friday and was smoked in singles play by Cantlay.


Grade
B-

Skinny: Two-and-a-half points in four matches seems like it should be enough, but still, a veteran like Oosthuizen has to do more if the Internationals are going to win. They relied too heavily on several of their rookies.


C.T. Pan (2-1-0)

Grade
B

Skinny: Turned out to be a solid partner for Hideki Matsuyama, who has struggled to find the right pairing, and battled back against Reed to avoid a historically bad singles loss.


Adam Scott (2-2-1)

Grade
C

Skinny: See both Marc Leishman and Louis Oosthuizen. Scott had played in eight previous cups and lost all eight. The Internationals needed more from him if they were going to win for the first time in over 20 years. More was expected from him in singles.


Cameron Smith (1-1-1)

Grade
B

Skinny: Good, young energy and proved to be a good team player. Was willing to do whatever his captain asked of him. One of only two outright singles victories and none bigger than him beating Justin Thomas in a match the Internationals had to have.


Grade
A-

Skinny: With his team holding a two-point lead heading into Sunday he did his job as a captain. His team embraced his vision and he didn’t leave anything to chance, but it simply wasn’t good enough against a relentless American team on Sunday. Ultimately, he was undone by veterans, not rookies.