Ryder Cup 2014: Ian Poulter the postman delivers once again

We had to wait until the 15th hole, but two late birdies earns talisman a valuable half

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The Independent Online

They call him The Postman because he always delivers. Ian Poulter finally knocked on the American’s door on Saturday then dropped two birdies through their letterbox. It was better late than never.

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Cue bedlam. Cue those bulging eyes that he says frighten his children. Unleash that trademark double-fisted air punch and the banshee scream.

The roar from the crowd when Poulter chipped in from 50 yards at the 15th would have burst through the ozone layer and been heard on the Space Station. The earth shook, too. Poulter, whose heroics have made him a Ryder Cup legend, was back.

Justin Rose said all Poulter needed was a spark to kick-start his low-key performance at Gleneagles. It wasn’t so much a spark as a surge from the National Grid. It was like Dr Frankenstein had just plugged in the monster. Poulter bolted upright. The beast was alive.

 

His pyrotechnics plus Rory McIlroy’s phenomenal drives rescued a crucial half point for Europe in the fourballs. It has also fired up Poulter for the singles.

“It was nice to get the juices flowing,” Poulter said. “I’m ready to go again.”

Poulter laughed when it was pointed out that he had been “playing like a drain” before that chip-in.

“I never give in. Funny things at funny times can happen if you stay positive,” he said. “You have to keep telling yourself the good stuff’s coming. But it took quite a while. I’ve got a big heart.”

One that he beat with his fist and pointed to the crowd yelling his name. “There’s only one Ian Poulter,” they chanted.

“The grandstands are full and they’re 20-deep on the banks, maybe more,” he said comparing what he did with scoring a goal for his beloved Arsenal.

“Ryder Cups just do it, don’t they?” Poulter said. “You get such an amazing rush from holing shots at pivotal times. No other buzz like it. There was a lot of emotion. It’s been waiting to come out. It took way too long to do so but it was nice to be able to do it in that fashion,” he said.

With Rickie Fowler looking certain to birdie the 15th, Poulter knew the significance of what he was about to try when he stood over his ball before chipping over a bunker and watching it track into the cup.

I was trying to chip it in,” he said. “Rickie Fowler’s ball was stiff. He was probably going to hole that putt. It was black and white,” he said. “There are no grey areas when your opponent is sitting there with a five-foot putt to go two-up. You’re just focused on trying to hole your chip shot. It was nice that it went in.”

Nice? It was just sensational.

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Cruising in style, Poulter and McIlroy make their way back to the clubhouse

Poulter was rested from yesterday afternoon’s foursomes but was confident “the boys would do a good job”.

With that he headed off to support his teammates but with his phone in his pocket to keep up to date with Arsenal’s derby match against Tottenham. 

Poulter doesn’t care who he is drawn to play against in the singles. “There are no egos on this team,” he said looking forward to the final day.

“To walk through that tunnel to the first tee is a truly amazing feeling,” he said. “The last picture you see is Seve before you walk out to a standing ovation. That’s why we all love to play in the Ryder Cup.”

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