South Africa’s latest golfing phenom performs best under pressure – as he has proven on many occasions, most recently with his share of fourth at the US Open.
When the going gets tough, Grace gets going, and this week he’ll need some real grit to take on the Americans, who have won five in a row against the Internationals.
There has been much talk about how interest in the tournament is waning, with International captain Nick Price clearly stating his intent to revive the rivalry with a win over America.
The International team has a solid African contingent, with Grace being joined by players Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel. Price has chosen two fellow Zimbabweans as his captain’s assistants in Tony Johnstone and Mark McNulty.
Keeping the team in check will be Vice Captain KJ Choi, who is likely to bring out the best in the Asian golfers of the team – namely Hideki Matsuyama, Thongchai Jaidee, Sangmoon Bae, and Anirban Lahiri.
The final group of players in the international side are from the South Pacific, with President’s Cup veteran Adam Scott in attendance along with fellow Australians Jason Day, Marc Leishman, and Steven Bowditch.
Completing the 12-man team is New Zealand’s Danny Lee, who has come into his own on the PGA Tour this season.
Standing in the way of the Internationals is a formidable American side topped by Jordan Spieth, Zach Johnson, Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson, and Dustin Johnson.
PGA Tour regulars Jimmy Walker, Matt Kuchar, JB Holmes, Chris Kirk, and Bill Hass will bolster the team, while 2014 Ryder Cup veterans Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed add the final flourish to a good looking outfit.
The stage is set for something special and the Internationals are undoubtedly hungry to win for the first time in six years and Grace will be keen to lead the way.
He showed just how good he can be when he became the first player in the history of the European Tour to win his first four events in the same year (2012).
At this year’s Cadillac Match Play Championship he made it to the round of 16, which he’ll remember with more fondness than the 2013 President’s Cup that he took part in, where the Internationals succumbed to the Americans 18 ½ – 15 ½.
In light of Grace’s recent performance in the majors and his all-round demeanour as a leading professional it seems that he’s ready to show the America crew just how tough South Africans can make it for you. There is certainly a fire that he’ll bring to the tournament and hopefully it allows his team to fry the Americans.