“Momentum. Inspiration!” Harrington feeling bullish after Solheim success

Bernie McGuire

Padraig Harrington (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

Bernie McGuire

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‘Momentum and Inspiration’ – The two extra clubs European Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington says his team will now take, following the European Solheim Cup’s stunning success, with them later this month to Wisconsin.

Like most serious golf observers, Harrington found himself glued to the TV watching coverage unfold from the Solheim Cup in Toledo, Ohio. Catronia Matthew’s European Team led from start-to-finish to become only the second team to win on U.S. soil in humbling their hosts 15-13 on the Inverness course.

Europe’s Ryder Cup victory record Stateside looks slightly better having won three of the last Ryder Cup encounters since 1995 on U.S. soil, however there’s no denying Harrington’s men seem to be facing a sterner task than Matthew’s girls with Steve Stricker’s side already boasting a powerhouse of muscle, major-winning status and lofty World Rankings stature.

Though after the events in the Buckeye State last week, Harrington and his eventual European Team have a 15th club in their bags and that’s to match the efforts of their European women colleagues when they pull on their blue colours from September 24-26 at Whistling Straits.

Harrington’s Wisconsin dozen will be formalised at the close of this week’s European Tour flagship BMW PGA Championship though ahead of the final event for European Ryder Cup qualifying, he was asked what he thought his team could take from the efforts of their European Solheim Cup winning colleagues.

“Momentum. Inspiration. What’s not to take?” Harrington proudly stated.

“I was watching it and I was thrilled the way they went about it, how they did it, the win. It definitely helps us. You want all the momentum you can get for us as the Ryder Cup team.

“The way the European girls went out there and won, the style in which they won, as they just dominated. Let’s be honest, they won fair-and-square. There was no luck involved. Sometimes you might think, ‘Oh, did they get lucky to win’? No, as that was not the case. That’s the sort of momentum that we would be looking to.”

It has been pointed out ahead of the Monday Singles final round how the Americans would draw on the near 100% home crowd support to overrun the European visitors. But after Irish rookie superstar Leona Maguire secured the first point on Monday with a 5&4 white-wash of Jennifer Kupcho, the Stars and Stripes supporters became quieter and quieter as each ‘blue coloured’ win went up on the board.

Harrington’s men will be also outnumbered support-wise along the shores of Lake Michigan and while the crowd noise could be triple what we heard last week in Ohio, Harrington reckons it could also work in Europe’s favour.

“There were a few things that you looked at in the practical sense,” he said.

“Obviously there was a dominant U.S. crowd compared to the European side. Maybe there’s a few things that we will talk about and adjust and certainly learn from. Yeah, I tried to learn as much as I could, even copying a few things from opening speeches (smiling).”


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