We’ve heard stories about the U.S. Ryder Cup team or past European Ryder Cup squads, even tales from inside the Americans’ Presidents Cup teams. But as for the Internationals? Perhaps not as many. But according to Abraham Ancer, whose 3.5 points at last year’s event at Royal Melbourne in Australia tied for the team lead, the Internationals went a long way in becoming a more cohesive unit last December.
“All the guys, we had really great camaraderie,” said Ancer, when appearing on this week’s Subpar Podcast. “I feel like the Internationals never really had that before, of what [other players] told me. You know, different countries, different languages, it’s tough to connect. And this was the first year that everybody was like, Man, we actually felt like a team. It was really cool. I think [captain] Ernie [Els] did a great job prepping us before the Presidents Cup, so I feel like when we where there we already felt somewhat like a team and kind of clicked.”
As for what it was like behind the scenes, Ancer lifted the curtain on some of those details, too.
“Sungjae [Im], we got good stories about that guy,” Ancer said. They gave him a nickname in Korean that, translated to English, meant ‘Big Korean Weapon.’ That guy does not miss, and it’s insane, I’ve never seen anything like it. He’s just so aggressive, he always looks at pins and is like, I don’t care, I’m going at this, I don’t care, I’ll get it up and down if I don’t hit the green.”
The comedian? Louis Oosthuizen helped fill that role.
“Louie is probably the guy I didn’t really spend much time with before the Presidents Cup; he surprised me,” Ancer said. “That guy is so funny. Louis is so funny, singing karaoke — the rides back on the bus we had a microphone, it was amazing.”
Adam Scott was the team’s veteran, playing in an International team-record ninth Presidents Cup in 2019. Hideki Matsuyama and Oosthuizen, who both played in their fourth last year, were the next-most experienced. Ancer said Scott had a “captain vibe.”
“He’s a great guy that kind of pushes you and kind of motivates you,” Ancer said. “He gave us a speech that we never really expected, getting off the bus, and I was like, ‘Bro, I am ready to play golf.’ I had never felt like that. I was like, This is awesome.”
Despite building a big lead after the first two days — and midway through the third day — the Americans stormed back in Sunday singles, taking eight of 12 points to win 16-14. You can listen to Ancer’s full Subpar interview below.