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Edoardo Molinari (Getty Images)

Molinari aims to take the Rocca road to Ryder Cup success

Among all the many congratulatory messages on his mobile phone after being confirmed as a Captain’s pick for The 2010 Ryder Cup, one particular text stopped Edoardo Molinari in his tracks.

 Among all the many congratulatory messages on his mobile phone after being confirmed as a Captain’s pick for The 2010 Ryder Cup, one particular text stopped Edoardo Molinari in his tracks.

It was a simple ‘well done’ and it meant the world to the 29 year old Italian. The sender was none other than Costantino Rocca, the first Italian to play in The Ryder Cup and an inspirational figure in the lives of Molinari and his younger brother, Francesco.

The message arrived soon after Edoardo had captured the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles to prove to European Captain Colin Montgomerie that he was deserving of a place in the side alongside his brother.

No sooner had Montgomerie confirmed his place than Rocca was in touch. “He sent me a text first of all and then he called to congratulate me. He said some very kind words and was quite emotional, too.

“It meant a lot to me because it came from Costantino. I remember being at home in Turin watching The Ryder Cup from Valderrama and being excited because we knew Costantino was playing Tiger Woods in the singles.

“We were a bit too young to remembere much about his Ryder Cup debut at The Belfry in 1993 but by 1995 we were hooked watching Nick Faldo play that amazing wedge to the last green to beat Curtis Strange and win The Ryder Cup.”

By 1997, the two brothers were aged 16 and 14 respectively and Edoardo – the elder sibling – recalled: “It was great fun to watch Europe win at Valderrama and to see Costantino’s 4 and 2 win over Tiger. All I know is that I wanted to play in The Ryder Cup from that moment.”

Now the Molinaris hope to hear ‘Forza Italia’ echoing around The Celtic Manor Resort as they make their debuts against the United States.

Edoardo added: “Costantino was a big inspiration to us growing up and he has said he intends being at Celtic Manor to watch the match and to support Francesco and me. Hopefully we won’t disappoint him!”

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