ON TV

Friday: 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. (USA).

Saturday: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

(WRC-4, WBAL-11).

Sunday: 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (WRC-4, WBAL-11).

THE COURSE

The Country Club

Brookline, Mass.

Length: 7,033 yards.

Par: 35-36 -- 71.

Founded in 1882, golf began 10 years later when the first six holes were built. One of the five founding courses of the USGA, and only club to be host of six USGA competitions -- three U.S. Opens, five U.S. Amateurs, three U.S. Women's Amateurs, two Walker Cup matches, a U.S. Girls' Junior and a U.S. Junior Amateur. Site of America's first great triumph in golf -- Francis Ouimet beating British stars Harry Vardon and Ted Ray to win the 1913 U.S. Open.

THE FORMAT

Foursomes or Alternate Shot

Eight matches

This is a match in which two golfers from one team compete against two from the other, with each side playing one ball. The golfers play alternate shots until the hole is played out. In this format, team members alternate playing the tee shots on each hole. Foursomes format will be played this morning and again on Saturday morning.

Four-Ball

Eight matches

This is a match in which two players play their better ball score against the better ball score of two players from the opposing team. Four-ball is played this afternoon and again on Saturday afternoon.

Singles

12 matches

This is a match in which one player challenges another player in head-to-head competition. This format will be held on Sunday.

Scoring

The team with the lowest score wins the hole. If two teams tie, then the hole is halved. At the end of each match, one point is awarded for each victory, a half-point when the match is a draw. The U.S. needs 14 points to win the Cup. Europe, as defending champion, would retain the cup if it ends in a tie.

UNITED STATES TEAM

Tiger Woods

Career victories: 15.

Major championships: Masters ('97), PGA Championship ('99).

Career Ryder Cup record: 1-3-1.

Outlook: Not a bad guy to have on the team. The best player in the world, still the most feared player in match play and on top of his game. Eager to atone for subpar play at Valderrama.

David Duval

Career victories: 11.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: Not a fan of match play, but is good enough that it shouldn't matter. Has not won in nearly six months, and will be particularly under the gun because of his outspokenness in asking that a share of profits go to hometown charities.

Payne Stewart

Career victories: 19.

Major championships: PGA Championship ('89), U.S. Open ('91, '99).

Career Ryder Cup record: 8-7-1.

Outlook: Figures to be the heart and soul of U.S. team. Has used the Ryder Cup as his incentive all year, and it has paid off. Putting better than ever, which is always critical in matches.

Davis Love III

Career victories: 15.

Major championships: PGA Championship ('97).

Career Ryder Cup record: 5-8-0.

Outlook: Back and neck problems could limit him to one match per day. He was 0-4 at Valderrama and anxious to atone for that. Putter can be suspect, but all other aspects of his game are solid.

Mark O'Meara

Career victories: 23.

Major championships: Masters ('98), British Open ('98).

Career Ryder Cup record: 4-7-1.

Outlook: Traveling the globe, reaping rewards for huge '98 season, doing everything but winning. Will offer to sit out if he feels his game is not in shape.

Hal Sutton

Career victories: 11.

Major championships: PGA Championship ('83).

Career Ryder Cup record: 3-3-3.

Outlook: Playing better than he did last year, and is a good driver, which keeps him in every hole. This will be his first cup competition in a dozen years.

Justin Leonard

Career victories: 4.

Major championships: British Open ('97).

Career Ryder Cup record: 0-2-2.

Outlook: A better match-play guy than his record indicates. Not terribly long, but manages his way around the course as well as anyone.

Jim Furyk

Career victories: 4.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 1-2-0.

Outlook: Not nearly as consistent as he has been the past two years. But he's tough in match play because of his accuracy off the tee.

Phil Mickelson

Career victories: 14.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 4-1-2.

Outlook: Back in the routine and playing well. Can be a birdie machine, which is perfect for best-ball. Thrives on match play.

Jeff Maggert

Career victories: 4.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 4-3-0.

Outlook: The most unheralded American. That his only 1999 victory was the Match Play Championship gives credibility to his credentials.

Tom Lehman

Career victories: 6.

Major championships: British Open ('96).

Career Ryder Cup record: 3-2-2.

Outlook: The obvious captain's pick, and the toughest fighter on the U.S. team. Hasn't won this year, but keeps giving himself chances. Four second-place finishes since his shoulder healed. Putting remains suspect.

Steve Pate

Career victories: 6.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 0-1-1.

Outlook: Surprising captain's pick, but he's a grossly underrated player. Tied for 3rd in U.S. Open at The Country Club in 1988.

EUROPEAN TEAM

Colin Montgomerie

Scotland

Career victories: 26.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 9-6-3.

Outlook: Already a five-time winner this year and on his way to a seventh straight money title. With Nick Faldo and Bernhard Langer off the team, becomes the leader. One of straightest drivers in golf, but putting has been questionable.

Lee Westwood

England

Career victories: 17.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 2-3-0.

Outlook: Has won 14 times around the world since the last Ryder Cup. One of the most outspoken Europeans when it comes to the matches. Long and straight, another player whose game should set up well for The Country Club.

Darren Clarke

Northern Ireland

Career victories: 6.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 1-1-0.

Outlook: Game was in a funk until he fired his coach and sought help from Butch Harmon. Has been consistent most of the year. Teamed with Colin Montgomerie to beat Davis Love III and Fred Couples in best-ball match.

Paul Lawrie

Scotland

Career victories: 3.

Major championships: British Open ('99).

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: In spite of how he got into the British Open playoff, closing with two birdies was a most impressive finish on a course of that caliber. A pairing with Jean Van de Velde would be appropriate.

Miguel Angel Jimenez

Spain

Career victories: 6.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: The biggest unknown facing America. Not to be confused with Miguel Angel Martin, whom Seve Ballesteros forced off the '97 team. Has followed up best year on tour with an even better one. Fifth in scoring average.

Jose Maria Olazabal

Spain

Career victories: 24.

Major championships: Masters ('94, '99).

Career Ryder Cup record: 14-8-3.

Outlook: A magical short game, but he must must find a way to keep the ball in play at The Country Club. The last reigning Masters champion to win his singles match was Sandy Lyle in 1985.

Sergio Garcia

Spain

Career victories: 2.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: Questions about his game were answered at PGA Championship. Best 19-year-old at The Country Club since Francis Ouimet.

Jarmo Sandelin

Sweden

Career victories: 4.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: Feisty, fearless and enjoying the best season of his career. Qualified for the PGA Tour in 1995 but decided to play in Europe full time.

Jean Van De Velde

France

Career victories: 2.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: In his favor is his laissez-faire approach to golf, could have the perfect attitude to withstand the pressure, assuming he feels it.

Padraig Harrington

Ireland

Career victories: 2.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: Could be a dangerous Irishman who follows in the footsteps of Eamonn Darcy, Christy O'Connor Jr. and Philip Walton.

Andrew Coltart

Scotland

Career victories: 3.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: First year.

Outlook: Could face additional pressure as a surprise captain's pick, particularly since Mark James chose him over experience (Bernhard Langer). Will be one of several rookies who thrives or crumbles.

Jesper Parnevik

Sweden

Career victories: 9.

Major championships: None.

Career Ryder Cup record: 1-1-2.

Outlook: A great ball-striker and can get dangerously hot with his putter. Has played on only one Ryder Cup team, but may be looked upon as a leader for an otherwise inexperienced team.

SOURCE: Associated Press