George W. Bush visits with Walker Cup squads
05 Sep 2013
by Golfweek

see also: The Walker Cup, Royal Liverpool Golf Club

-- USGA Photo
-- USGA Photo

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Secret service lingered around National Golf Links on Thursday as former president George W. Bush paid a visit to U.S. and Great Britain & Ireland Walker Cuppers. The Americans sat down to lunch with No. 43 and got a few words of wisdom. Humble was the word of the day.

“He talked a lot about humility and not letting the fame get to us,” said Michael Kim of the U.S. team.

After lunch, the Americans split into fivesomes and Bush laced up his golf shoes for a few quick holes. He played Nos. 1 and 2 with the first fivesome, Nos. 17 and 18 with the second.

“He swung it actually really well,” Kim said. “He is a lot better than I thought he’d be. He’s a good player, I think he said he’s about a 10 (handicap).”

Not surprisingly, it’s been a patriotic week for the U.S. team. There were early-week trips to the 9/11 Memorial and the U.S. Open Tennis Championship. Players are staying in cottages across the fence row at Sebonack Golf Club. From their back doors, it’s just a few short steps to Sebonack’s range.

It just feels like another college tournament to me," Kim said of the U.S. squad. "It’s tough playing against these guys but to be on the (same) team is reassuring."

ABOUT THE The Walker Cup

The Walker Cup Match is a biennial 10-man amateur team competition between the USA and a team composed of players from Great Britain and Ireland and selected by The R&A. It is played over two days with 18 singles matches and eight foursomes (alternate-shot) matches.

The first United States Walker Cup Team, which in 1922 defeated the GB&I side, 8-4, at the National Golf Links of America, is considered among the best teams ever and included Francis Ouimet, Bob Jones, Charles “Chick” Evans and Jess Sweetser. Many of the game’s greatest players have taken part in Walker Cup competition, including U.S. Open champions Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth for the USA and Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose for Great Britain and Ireland.

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