Team
Chris Wood is one of six rookies in the European side at Hazeltine.
Team

Europe

Hazeltine just the beginning for Wood

Chris Wood begins his Ryder Cup career this week at Hazeltine National in the hope that he and his fellow rookies can continue Europe's glorious golden run for many years to come.

The Europeans have won eight of the last ten contests and arrived in Minnesota looking to win four in a row for the first time since continental Europe joined the competition in 1979.

The team has a very different look to many of those successes, however, with Wood among a group of six first-timers teeing it up alongside the likes of Lee Westwood and Sergio Garcia - who will take their combined Ryder Cup tally to 18 this week.

Rafa Cabrera Bello is the oldest of the rookies at 32 with Matthew Fitzpatrick, Thomas Pieters, Andy Sullivan Danny Willett and Wood all still in their 20s. Throw in Rory McIlroy who is making his fourth appearance at the age of just 27, and Wood is confident that the European Team is in safe hands.

"It was always going to happen in Europe at some point," he said. "We've seen the same sort of faces on the European Team side for maybe the last four, five, six Ryder Cups and that just shows the strength that they have continued to play at for that amount of time.

"So hopefully the group that you're seeing this week, or at least half the group, can try and create the same sort of thing and in 12 years' time, we're all sat here, we're all 40 and we're all playing in our sixth or seventh Ryder Cup.

"I think if I wasn't involved, I'd feel quite left out, because there are so many of us as rookies here. Myself, Dan, Sully, we grew up in the same era playing amateur golf together back in England and Europe and we played in England squads together growing up. So we have all known each other since we were sort of 13, 14 years old. It's pretty cool that the three of us have made our first Ryder Cup Team at the same time."

Willett comes into his first Ryder Cup as the Masters Tournament champion but, much like Wood, he is eager to add Ryder Cup great to his already impressive CV over the next few years.

"It's a massively proud moment for me to be able to be here representing Europe and as a rookie, hopefully there will be a fair few many more to come," he said.

"It's just the whole team atmosphere. 103 out of 104 weeks, we're a very individual sport. We play on our own. We practise on our own. And for one weekend every two years, you come together as a team.

"Because we play a lot of golf in Europe, we're a very closely-knit team and I think that really comes out within this environment. We've got some great people in the backroom staff helping out and we've had some great people send messages in and come and speak to us."