What a delicious twist of fate the President's Cup should be taking place this week, of all weeks, and in Donald Trump's hometown of New York to boot.

Are there any players representing the United States in this biennial match against the Rest of the World ready to join the sporting protest movement currently exercising the country and take a knee when the national anthem plays at the opening ceremony on Thursday?

Will the vice-captain Tiger Woods, who has had his own run-ins with the police this year, of course, throw off a lifetime of caution and stand shoulder to shoulder - or rather kneel - with other prominent black athletes such as LeBron James and the golf-obsessed Steph Curry?

Imagine the electrifying effect that would have on the matter.


It will certainly be the hot topic when the team gather and face the press for the match beginning on Friday.

Chances are nothing will happen when the national anthem is played, of course. This is golf, after all. Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka will probably have no idea what the journalists are on about. Aren't we here to hit some long drives and make some birdies?
It will certainly be nothing like the amazing scenes we saw at American football matches on Sunday.

Reacting to Trump's incendiary remarks that players taking a knee to protest what they perceive as racial injustice pursued by his regime were 'sons of bitches,' and ought to be fired for 'disrespecting the flag,' hundreds more exercised their constitutional right and duly knelt. Since then, other sporting stars have spoken out and now the spotlight is about to shine on Trump's favourite pastime.

While you might be right in thinking most top players have no truck with politics - or hold views more right wing than the polarising President himself - it is unfair to paint them all that way.

Take Peter Malnati, who won a PGA Tour title in 2015. He said in a statement: "Those who kneel during the national anthem aren't disrespecting the heroes who sacrificed to defend the United States.

"They are pointing out that, as a nation, we are not doing a good job of upholding the values for which people sacrificed.

"When players take a knee and the gut reaction of the President is to call them a son of a bitch, I ask you, what do you stand for?

"As for me, I stand for freedom and justice for all. I stand for equality, empathy and compassion. I kneel to hubris and greed. Therefore, I take a knee for the flag that represents this administration. Not because I don't love this country but because I do."

Is there anyone else with similar views representing the United States at the President's Cup - I know, the irony - who's prepared to take a knee? At the very least, it has finally provided a damn good reason to tune in to what is usually the most forgettable part of these showpiece team occasions - the opening ceremony.

Stage a golf event in the North East of England in late September and you would think you'd be struggling to attract players outside those who form the European Tour's chorus line.

It is surely a fulsome tribute to the tournament host Lee Westwood, therefore, that this week's British Masters at Close House, near Newcastle, will also possess a healthy sprinkling of stardust.

Would the Masters champion Sergio Garcia really have flown direct from Atlanta and the Tour Championship on Sunday night if not for the fact his old Ryder Cup sparring partner was running the show? Would Rory McIlroy be in attendance if this was just another autumnal pit stop on the European Tour?

There are plenty more of Westwood's old Ryder Cup team-mates showing up as well, such as Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter and Martin Kaymer, together with plenty of fellow Englishmen who looked up to him growing up, like 2016 BMW PGA Championship winner Chris Wood, Danny Willett and Matt Fitzpatrick.

Gratifyingly, therefore, what we're about to witness is a fitting celebration of Westwood's enormous contribution over the years to European golf.