It was a moment of vindication for both Tiger Woods and Fred Couples, the man who had faith in him when few else did, as Woods sealed a fourth consecutive Presidents Cup for the Americans in what is beginning to look a very lopsided series.
Couples embraced Woods like a returning brother after he closed out Aaron Baddeley 4 and 3 in the penultimate game to start the celebration early.
For the first time in a long time Woods looked every inch a former world number one and it was equally rewarding for Couples who had come under a lot of fire for picking the out of form and out of favour player as a wild card, leaving USPGA champion Keegan Bradley out of the side.
Couples looked to have made a costly mistake when Woods lost by a a record 7 and 6 in the opening foursomes and went on to lose his second and fourth games as well but the 14-time Major winner’s class showed through.
“I was hoping it would not come down to my point, but we didn’t get off to a good start,” said Woods.
“I played well all week, but unfortunately didn’t make any putts in the first four matches.
“Today was a different deal – they poured right in.”
Captain Couples said the final display from Woods should silence the critics of his selection.
“I don’t know if I’ve ever felt vindicated in golf in 30 years, but I feel like I know what I’m doing,” he said after the win.
“There’s a reason I picked Tiger early. He worked hard and when a guy says, ‘Don’t worry about me’ you are going to smile.
“I got frustrated a bit it because I felt I was picking the greatest player I’ve ever seen play.
“I heard he was the Tiger of old today and Aaron Baddeley said it was phenomenal.”