‘Postman’ Ian Poulter needs extra special golf to deliver Ryder Cup points at Whistling Straits

Ian Poulter admits it will take “extra special” golf to retain the Ryder Cup in front of a hostile crowd and will make no apologies if that gives him cause for more chest-beating celebrations.

Team Europe's Ian Poulter hits a drive on the second hole during a practice day at the Ryder Cup at the Whistling Straits. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

The United States are odds-on favourites to make it seven wins in the last eight contests for the home side, with all 12 of their players ranked inside the world’s top 21.

But Europe’s dozen are well accustomed to overcoming the odds and Poulter will draw on his experience of inspiring their last win on US soil at Medinah in 2012 as Padraig Harrington’s side bid to retain the trophy won in convincing fashion in Paris three years ago.

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“It’s a great buzz to win away from home,” Poulter, 45, said ahead of a practice round at Whistling Straits. “Look around, the grandstands are red, the fans are 98 per cent US fans, it is difficult from start to finish.

Team Europe's Ian Poulter on the 11th tee during the third preview day of the 43rd Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits, Wisconsin. (Picture: Anthony Behar/PA Wire)

“It is hard, it is not easy to play away from home. As much as we feel comfortable as a team to know we’re underdogs, to know that we have to play extra special this week to get the job done it feels pretty rewarding at the end of the week if we can get it done.”

Nicknamed ‘The Postman’ because he always delivers a point, Poulter has become such an integral part of the Ryder Cup that it never seemed in doubt that he would receive a wild card – his fifth in seven contests – from Harrington.