An Interview with: GRAEME MCDOWELL, RORY MCILROY

Q. Who has the first tee shot honour?

MCDOWELL: “We are still looking at that. We have a team meeting tonight and we will talk through how the course breaks down for us and we will finalise that tonight. Now we know the opponents are we are focussed.”

MCILROY: “We have an idea but it’s not set in stone. We will talk to the Captain and the Vice-Captains again tonight and make the decision then. I can’t wait for 07:20 in the morning. Leading the side off in The Ryder Cup – we are going to go out there and get the blue on the board early.”

MCDOWELL: “We are going to use the World Number One’s power and precision and I will just knock a few tap-ins in.”

Q. No matter who it is that tees off, it is a great honour for you both to be first out?

MCILROY: “It is a great honour to lead Europe out there.”

MCDOWELL: “It is a great honour – we didn’t do that at Celtic Manor so it is a big thing for us both.

For me personally it is huge because I was last man out in the last match and I am first out here. I am very proud to be playing alongside my great friend and the greatest player on the planet.”

Q. Your opponents?

MCILROY: “To be honest they are not the opponents we were expecting. We know that their team is so strong all the way through but it was a little surprise to see a rookie in their first group.”

MCDOWELL: “I was expecting Phil and Keegan to go first but obviously Davis has his strategies and it will be a great match no matter who we are playing. Jim is a hell of a player, a seasoned campaigner and Brandt is obviously on a hell of a high after last week and winning the FedEx Cup.”

Q. How important to get the first point on the board?

MCDOWELL: “It’s huge. Tomorrow morning’s session is hugely important and José María has stressed that. We know they are all important but we really feel that it is very important to make a fast start.”

Q. Emotions right now?

MCILROY: “I just can’t wait. I am so excited right now – I just can’t wait to get out there to try and get the first point.”

MCDOWELL: “Couldn’t agree more with my partner. We are pretty pumped for this whole thing so let’s get out there and get the blue on the board.”