European Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald is wisely using this week’s BMW PGA Championship to help decide likely Ryder Cup pairings ahead of the next fortnight’s Ryder Cup showdown in Rome.
And with all 12 members of the European Team teeing-up at DP World Tour HQ, why wouldn’t he The opening two rounds will see the following three-balls teeing-up on the famed West Course at Wentworth.
Thursday – Round 1
|08:40am – Rory McIlroy, Ludvig Aberg and Viktor Hovland|
|09:00am – Tommy Fleetwood, Shane Lowry and Sepp Straka|
|12:40pm – Jon Rahm, Nicolai Højgaard and Tyrrell Hatton|
|12:50pm – Justin Rose, Matthew Fitzpatrick and Robert MacIntyre|
|8:15am – Thomas Bjørn, Nicolas Colsaerts and Stephen Gallacher|
|09:30am – Luke Donald, Edoardo Molinari and Francesco Molinari|
Lowry is this week’s BMW PGA defending champion and was grouped with Straka and Justin Rose during Monday’s visit to Rome and the host Marco Simone course.
And the Irishman spoke of his delight in being a part of Monday’s ‘inspection’ visit.
“It was amazing. Obviously it was a get together for the 12 lads, and vice captains and I think it was a very, very worthwhile exercise, and well, you’ll all be the judge of that in about three weeks’ time,” said Lowry
“But I think, you know, especially for the younger lads yesterday, it was very, very cool. Just to get everyone involved and everyone feel like The Ryder Cup is almost starting and you know because when you get there the week of and it’s your first Ryder Cup, even if it’s not your first Ryder Cup, the week goes by quickly. So you get in and before you know it, it’s Wednesday or Thursday, and you maybe feel like you haven’t really got to do what you would have liked.
“So yesterday was a very worthwhile exercise. We had a dinner last night and had a team meeting. It was one of those days that we got a lot done yesterday that we don’t need to do in two weeks. Any hour you can save the week of the Ryder Cup is needed, so yeah, a very worthwhile exercise yesterday.
“The rough is pretty thick but yeah, you need to hit fairways and you need to hit greens, and you need to stay in the hole and that’s the way we like it.”