Ryder Cup Captains Colin Montgomerie and Corey Pavin address the media at The Celtic Manor Resort.
Captains prepare for a close look at Celtic Manor
American Ryder Cup Captain Corey Pavin admits he’s excited about the chance to get a look at the The Celtic Manor Resort’s Twenty Ten Course at this week’s The Celtic Manor Wales Open.
Former US Open Championship winner Pavin has flown over from the States to compete in The European Tour event, but admits Ryder Cup preparations will be on his mind in South Wales.
“I think the golf course is very good, I like the golf course a lot,” said the 49 year old. “It's a very straightforward course, it has some exciting finishing holes which will be good for stroke play, but certainly for The Ryder Cup, as well, it's going to be very interesting so I'm glad to be here.
“I would like to thank Sir Terry Matthews for hosting my wife, Lisa, and myself here this week and Barclays for hosting The Wales Open.
“I'm very glad to be here and to be able to play in the tournament and do a little reconnaissance work, as well, certainly. I think it's going to be a good week, so far the weather has been fairly good and everybody says the weather is going to be like this in The Ryder Cup, as well, so I'm expecting it.Right?”
And Pavin is not the only member of this week’s field thinking about more than the €343,086 winner’s cheque. Opposite number Colin Montgomerie is also competing and the Scot will hope to boost his position in The Race to Dubai as well as take a look at the course for next year’s contest.
“I think Corey and I will and have been already hosted royally since we have been both made captains back at the start of the year,” said Europe’s Captain, who boasts a formidable record in The Ryder Cup as a player.
“So we just look forward to a wonderful 16 months ahead of us to get everything in place to have a wonderful occasion here in Wales, and we look forward to the two Wales Opens that are coming up this week, and also in a years' time.”
Montgomerie admitted the added pressures of The Ryder Cup Captaincy have hindered his form slightly this year, but the 45 year old will be aiming for a 32nd European Tour Title at The Celtic Manor Resort.
“As an impact on the standard of play that I'll be hopefully competing with, it has impacted slightly, I think, on my own playing schedule,” said Montgomerie.
The event will also prevent a good opportunity for some of Europe’s top players to stake a claim for a place on Montgomerie’s team. The likes of Ross Fisher, Nick Dougherty and Francesco Molinari are amongst those competing who could well feature in the race for the 12 spaces on Montgomerie’s team.
And the eight time Order of Merit winner answered a resounding “yes” when asked if victory on the host course would be a factor when it came to deciding his three wildcards.