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David Howell of England hits a shot during the first practice day for the 35th Ryder Cup Matches at the Oakland Hills Country Club on September 14, 2004 in Bloomfield Township, Michigan. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
David Howell of England hits a shot during the first practice day for the 35th Ryder Cup Matches at the Oakland Hills Country Club on September 14, 2004 in Bloomfield Township, Michigan. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

New Boy Howell Knows The Game


September 14, 2004

David Howell may be a Ryder Cup rookie but he is no stranger to match play golf and will be able to draw on a wealth of experience in the head to head format when he tees off in The Ryder Cup Matches this week at Oakland Hills Country Club.

The young Englishman played for the Great Britain & Ireland team that claimed the Walker Cup in 1995 and competed in The Seve Trophy in 2000 and 2003.

"The Walker Cup was a great experience. I was playing great going into it, performed well in it. That was a big moment in any amateur's career. I would say I probably gained more experience in last year's Seve Trophy where I was playing absolutely dreadfully and still walked away with three points out of four. Just goes to show in 18-hole match-play, anything can happen," said Howell.

"Match play golf is totally different to individual stroke play. You can be playing great and lose or be struggling and win. That's the nature of this week. You really just don't know what's going to happen," he added.

The 29 year old is one of five first timers in the European Team along with compatriot Ian Poulter, Luke Donald and Paul Casey, Frenchman Thomas Levet.

"Well we are very excited. We are a much younger team than the Americans. There are five rather young rookies, although Thomas Levet is not so young, but a rookie all the same. We are all delighted to be playing and excited about it and looking forward to doing as well as we can and bringing the trophy back," said Howell.

Europe is fielding one of its strongest ever times in the Ryder Cup and the spirit in the side is one of cautious optimism.

"We're not overconfident, that's for sure. We have a task on our hands, being away from home on paper as always the statistics might show that the US has a stronger team; and we are aware of that. There's obviously lots that you read in the papers about the lack of major winners on our side, but that's been the case for many years. We are not overconfident, but we are confident we?re going to play well and if we play well we really feel that we?re going to have a chance," said Howell.

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