History

The Walker Cup Match began in the wake of World War I with a view toward stimulating golf interest on both sides of the Atlantic. The match grew in part out of two international matches between the USA and Canada, in 1919 and 1920.

At the same time, British and American amateurs considered each nation’s national amateur championship a great plum. Meanwhile, the USGA Executive Committee had been invited to Great Britain for a series of meetings with the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews Rules Committee. The meeting was to look at the advisability of modifying various rules of the game. Among the participants was George Herbert Walker, USGA president in 1920.

Upon the Executive Committee’s return to the United States of America, international team matches were discussed. The idea so appealed to Walker that he soon presented a plan and offered to donate a trophy. Walker had been a low handicap player and was a keen advocate of the game. When the press dubbed the trophy the Walker Cup, the name stuck.

In 1921, the USGA invited all golfing nations to send teams to compete in the Match, but no country was able to accept that year. The Americans stuck to their mission, however, and William C. Fownes, the 1910 U.S. Amateur champion, who had twice assembled the amateur teams that played against Canada, rounded up a third team in the spring of 1921 and took it to England. At Hoylake, the American team defeated a British team, 9-3, in an informal match the day before the British Amateur.

Early in 1922, The R&A announced that it would send a team to compete for the Walker Cup at the National Golf Links of America, Walker’s home club, in Southampton, N.Y.

Originally, the competition was open to any country that might care to challenge. The USGA invited all countries to compete. Except for Great Britain, however, no other country was able to accept.

Fownes was the American captain for the inaugural match and his team consisted of Charles Evans Jr., Robert Gardner, U.S. Amateur champion Jesse Guilford, Robert T. Jones Jr., Max Marston, Francis Ouimet, Jess Sweetser and Rudolph Knepper, who did not play.

Robert Harris was captain of the British side, and his players were Cyril Tolley, Roger Wethered, Colin Aylmer, C.V.L. Hooman, W.B. Torrance, John Caven and W. Willis Mackenzie. Ernest Holderness, the British Amateur Champion, was unable to make the trip.

Bernard Darwin, the golf writer of The Times of London, had accompanied the team and wound up playing in the Match. When Harris fell ill, Darwin was invited to compete in his place and serve as playing captain. He defeated Fownes, 3 and 1. The American Team, however, prevailed, winning the first Walker Cup Match, 8-4.

Until recent years, the USA clearly dominated the series, but the number of American victories never clouded the true purpose of the Walker Cup Match. A much higher value has been placed upon the series as a medium of international friendship and understanding between The R&A and the USGA.

The Match was played on an annual basis until 1924, when it was decided that the financial strain of annual encounters
was too severe. It was also believed that interest might drop if the Matches were played too frequently. A decision
was made to meet in alternate years.

The series was interrupted by World War II after the 1938 Match at St. Andrews, Scotland. When the Match resumed, in 1947, St. Andrews was again selected as the site. Under normal peacetime conditions, the Match would have been played in the USA, but postwar economic conditions would have made the trip difficult for the British.

The USA leads the series, 34-8-1.
Partner Links
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Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.

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Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



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IBM
   

IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

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Lexus
   

Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

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American Express
   

Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


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