Ryder Cup - Montgomerie leaves out English duo

Reuters - Sun, 29 Aug 18:43:00 2010

Europe's captain Colin Montgomerie has named Padraig Harrington, Luke Donald and Edoardo Molinari as his three wildcard selections for the Ryder Cup against the USA in October.

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Molinari got the nod after a blistering finish at Gleneagles where he captured the Johnnie Walker Championship by one stroke, less than 90 minutes before the wildcards were announced.

"In my time as a player on the European Tour I don't think I've seen a finish of that quality under that pressure ever," Montgomerie said after Molinari birdied the last three holes.

"That's the kind of player we need to regain the Ryder Cup. Birdying the last three holes in such fantastic fashion made our job very easy. It was literally incredible and we need this type of player to try to regain the Ryder Cup.

"It doesn't take much working out what one of my pairings will be," added Montgomerie referring to Edoardo and his brother Francesco who gained automatic selection for the 12-man team.

Edoardo, 29, and Francesco, 27, who joined forces to win the 2009 World Cup for Italy, will be the first brothers to play in the same Ryder Cup team.

"For two brothers to be playing in the Ryder Cup is an amazing achievement," said Edoardo. "I've said we won't lose a point and hopefully we can do that, perform well for the team."

The decision by Montgomerie and his vice-captains means there is no room in the side for the likes of Justin Rose - who was overlooked despite winning two US Tour events this season - Paul Casey, Henrik Stenson, Robert Karlsson, Alvaro Quiros and Sergio Garcia.

Garcia's consolation was being named as Montgomerie's fourth vice-captain on Sunday, joining Paul McGinley, Darren Clarke and Thomas Bjorn.

"There is one word to describe Sergio and that is 'passion'," Montgomerie said, "the same as Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal brought to the Ryder Cup.

"He will be a great asset to the European cause."

Montgomerie also said he had asked promising rookie Rhys Davies to accompany the team on his home Welsh soil at Celtic Manor in October.

"I feel sorry for Paul Casey and Justin Rose," added Montgomerie.

"The standard of European golf has been second to none this year. These are the 12 players we feel very happy with."

Harrington, Donald and Edoardo Molinari join automatic choices Lee Westwood, Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter, Ross Fisher, Francesco Molinari, Peter Hanson and Miguel Angel Jimenez in Europe's team.

"I chose Padraig because he has won three Majors and for the stature he brings to the team," Montgomerie said. "Nobody in matchplay golf wants to play him.

"Luke is a great competitor in foursomes and fourballs. Of the seven Ryder Cup matches he's played, he's only lost one. The selection has proved the most stressful thing in my career because I've had to leave out world stars.

"I've spoken to Justin and he's accepted the decision. Paul was on the course (playing in the US) so I'll be talking to him when he's finished his round," added Montgomerie.

"It's been the hardest job any captain has had because the standard of golf has been incredible."

Montgomerie's Europe take on Corey Pavin's US holders from October 1-3.


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