Junior Ryder Cup history
Rory McIlroy
Junior Ryder Cup history

Europe

Rory’s Maiden Junior Ryder Cup

Incredibly, it has been 14 years since Rory McIlroy got his first taste of Ryder Cup golf when he featured for Europe at the 2004 Junior Ryder Cup. 

Played at Westfield Group Country Club, this would be the last time Europe would win the Junior Ryder Cup outright, as they ran out 8 ½ - 3 ½ winners. 

The 2004 event would feature future Ryder Cup, Solheim Cup and Tour stars, from both sides of the pond. 

As well as McIlroy, the European team featured the likes of Carlota Ciganda, Oliver Fisher, Camilla Lennarth, Belen Mozo and Florentyna Parker. 

The Americans also had future PGA Tour winner Tony Finau in their squad. 

Although McIlroy was on the winning side come the end of the two days and gained some valuable match experience, the Northern Irishman would only pick up half a point for his team. 

Playing alongside Marius Thorp on day one, the European duo would collect half a point for their team against the strong American pair of Luke Guthrie and Chris DeForest.

The following day McIlroy and his partner Linn Gustafsson were unable to snatch half a point, as the US pairing of Mina Harigae and Chris DeForest won by one hole. 

Speaking about the Junior event before The 2014 Ryder Cup, McIlroy said: “Yeah it doesn’t seem like it was 10 years ago that I was there playing. I remember walking inside the ropes for one of the practice rounds with the European team at Oakland Hills. 

“When you think what can happen in such a short space of time, you know, this’ll be my third Ryder Cup since then. I’ve played on two winning Ryder Cup teams. It shows you what can happen. 

“I’m sure a couple of the Junior Ryder Cup players will look at guys like myself and Jordan Spieth and Sergio and Rickie and think, they were in our position not so long ago and we can be in theirs in a few years time.”