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Ryder Cup rivals line up for Warburg Cup

Bernhard Langer and Mark Calcavecchia, whose remembrances of the Ocean Course are of tears and failure, will return to the site of the 1991 Ryder Cup matches for the inaugural UBS Warburg Cup.

They were among the players announced Thursday for the matches Nov. 16-18 between the United States and the rest of the world. Half of each 12-man team will be at least 50 years old, with the other half 40-49.

One of the lasting images in Ryder Cup history was the agony on Langer's face when he missed a 6-foot putt on the 18th hole in the final match at Kiawah Island. That allowed Hale Irwin to win the match and gave the United States its first victory since 1983.

``Unfortunately, all of you remember the putt that Bernhard missed. The whole world saw it,'' said Gary Player, who will be captain of the World Team. ``But Langer came back the next week and won a tournament, so that shows you the competitor that he is.''

Calcavecchia also has bitter memories of the Ocean Course.

He had a 4-up lead with four holes to play against Colin Montgomerie, but then finished triple bogey-bogey-triple bogey-bogey to halve the match. Calcavecchia spent the rest of the day sobbing on the beach.

Arnold Palmer will be captain of the U.S. team that also includes Scott Hoch, Loren Roberts, Mark O'Meara, John Cook and Ryder Cup captain Curtis Strange from the 40-49 group; and Irwin, Jack Nicklaus, Larry Nelson, Tom Watson and Raymond Floyd from the 50-and-over crowd.

``All the guys were very anxious to come back here,'' Palmer said.

The World Team will have Langer, Nick Faldo of England, Ian Woosnam of Wales, Frank Nobilo of New Zealand and Ryder Cup captain Sam Torrance of Scotland from those between 40-49, plus a captain's pick to be announced later.

The 50-and-over group features Player, Isao Aoki of Japan, Jose Maria Canizares of Spain and Stewart Ginn of Australia. The last two spots will be determined Nov. 4 by the European Senior Tour's money list.

UBS America spokesman David Walker said the company, with offices in Midtown Manhattan, thought about not holding the event after the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center.

``We decided the worst possible thing was not to move forward,'' Walker said.

Palmer and Player both acknowledged that the Warburg competition might get more attention because this year's Ryder Cup was postponed one year.

But Palmer felt the event would be a good indication of America's recovery.

``With the world's situation as it is today, this is something that I think can bring us all a little closer together and be competitive,'' Palmer said.

There will be 24 points at stake -- six alternate-shot matches on Friday, six best-ball matches on Saturday and 12 singles matches Sunday.

Each member of the winning team gets $150,000, with $100,000 going to the losing players.


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