Ryder Cup Logo Ryder Cup: Team USASeptember 22-24 2006, The K Club, Straffan, County Kildare, Ireland
Story Image The U.S. team can prevail if the players don't get too tight and just focus on their games, says Chris DiMarco. (Photo: Getty Images)

U.S. team needs no extra motivation, says DiMarco

Some recent criticism in the media doesn't bother the members of the American team, says fiery Floridian Chris DiMarco, who stresses that no one wants a victory in Ireland this week more than the players themselves.

September 19, 2006

STRAFFAN, Ireland (PA) -- Chris DiMarco claims the U.S. team needs no extra motivation to reclaim the Ryder Cup at the K Club near Dublin this week.

Tom Lehman's team has been stung by some criticism from the U.S. media, but DiMarco, who booked his place on the team with an impressive second place to Tiger Woods at the British Open in July, said it mattered little.

DiMarco revealed that a number of articles had been posted on the bulletin board in the team room, but said the players were pumped up enough and did not need outside intervention.

"It [criticism] is not from the Europeans, it's from the Americans," he said. "We don't need any motivation. In football, you need it because it's one game against somebody. Here it's three days, five different sets of matches. There are 28 matches."

For the first time in more than decade, the Europeans are favorites, with a contributing factor being the USA has four rookies virtually unheard of on the European side of the Atlantic. DiMarco brushed that aside, claiming the Ryder Cup is a great leveler as many players raise their game irrespective of past form or experience.

"I don't care about that. I know that they have 12 very good players on the other side. We have 12 very good players on our team, too," he said. "Every one of their players I respect and I would hope that every one of their players respects us, too. It's just about trying to beat who you are playing on the day.

"You can throw away the world rankings, it's not about that," he said. "It is about will and going out and trying to get that little 14-inch gold cup."

The 38-year-old, who made his Ryder Cup debut in the defeat two years ago, did have a warning for the rookies.

"This is nerve-wracking. I've never been as nervous as I was on the first tee at Oakland Hills," he said. "I've told the new guys walking on the first tee you'll feel something you've never felt before.

"I think we want this so badly sometimes that we get in our way. We need to get ourselves out of our own way and just play golf," he added. "Obviously our talent is there. A lot of times we just need to lighten up."

Copyright 2006 PA Sport. All rights reserved.

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