INZAI CITY, Japan — Xander Schauffele, Collin Morikawa, and Rickie Fowler are playing for the first time since the Ryder Cup, hoping there’s no individual hangover from the Americans’ lopsided loss to Team Europe in Italy three weeks ago.
“Nothing’s carried over,” Morikawa said Wednesday on the eve of the Zozo Championship, the only PGA Tour event in Japan.
“I mean, look, the Ryder Cup was what it was and — that’s the final result,” Morikawa said. “There’s no lingering anger from losing at a Ryder Cup coming into a week like this. They’re two different things, one’s a team event and this is normal individual golf.”
Morikawa and Schauffele won only a single point each from four matches. Fowler played two matches and lost both.
“I don’t think you ever really erase it,” Fowler said. “Like I mentioned, they’re still amazing weeks, just not fun being on the wrong side of it.
“We like to put the losing memories behind us. But the memories we have with teammates and captains and the overall week, it’s something it’s still fun to look back on.”
Schauffele, who described his play in Italy as decent but “not great,” was asked about comments made by his father, Stefan, at the Ryder Cup, essentially suggesting that players should be compensated.
“I wasn’t super fired up that he was speaking to media, just because I know how things get twisted,” Schauffele said. “He specifically said that if the tournament’s for-profit, then players should get paid. He also said that if it’s charitable — it should be a charitable event most likely and that everything should get donated.”
The Ryder Cup takes in millions, and the players have no stake in the PGA of America.
The Zozo Championship is a 78-player, no-cut tournament at the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club on the outskirts of Tokyo. Keegan Bradley won last year for his first title in four years on the PGA Tour; he also won the Travelers Championship four months ago.