From the Rough

Golf without discretion

Colin Montgomerie is taking this Ryder Cup captaincy a little too seriously

with 3 comments

If there’s one quality you don’t want in a Ryder Cup captain, it’s an innate ability to alienate every potential player on your squad. US captain Corey Pavin seems to understand the importance of team building. “The one thing I don’t want to do is say anything stupid,” Pavin said earlier this year during the HP Byron Nelson Championship. “That’s my most important thing.”

Now if only European captain Colin Montgomerie could follow Pavin’s lead. You see, Monty isn’t one to mince words during a press conference. He’d rather butcher a press conference and leave room for a dicey set of follow-up questions. It’s just the way he rolls.

Well, he was in rare form again yesterday when he gave potential European Ryder Cup hopefuls an ultimatum regarding their required presence at Gleaneagles, which happens to be the final qualifying tournament before the Ryder Cup.

“I’ll be very surprised if I pick any player on the border of the team whom I ask to play at Gleneagles and they don’t show up,” Mongomerie was quoted as saying in the Daily Mail. “I expect there will be about eight
 candidates for my three wild cards and it should be a given that they turn up at the final event.”

There’s just one problem: the event happens to be the same week as the first FedEx Cup playoff event. If it feels like we’ve been here before, you’d be correct. It just so happens Monty gave a similar ultimatum regarding the European Tour event at Celtic Manor, which happens to conflict with this week’s Memorial tournament.

While this type of who-blinks-first showdown has happened before, I still question why Monty continues to force players to play in certain events, especially when he’s the tournament chair. I think that’s called a conflict of interest?

I wonder what European Ryder Cup fence-sitters will choose during that week: A shot at $10 million? Or a place in a tournament where you don’t have a shot at $10 million? Hmmm…that’s a really tough choice.

I’m making a personal plea to Monty after reading his absurd comments. So, Monty, please stop talking. Golfers are independent contractors, and they’ll do what they please. Last I recall, you were in their position as well. Loosen the tie a bit and take a deep breath because if you don’t, you may run yourself into the ground before the first shot is ever struck at Celtic Manor.


Written by Jonathan Wall

06/03/2010 at 4:24 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Total conflict of interests. I hope none of the players who are on the fence give in to this kind of coercion.

    Jim Dauer

    Jim Dauer

    06/03/2010 at 4:57 pm

  2. Bummer – I was looking forward to an argument with you – but find myself in agreement with your drift – but not your headline. You think Corey isn’t taking the Captaincy in utter seriousness?


    06/03/2010 at 5:28 pm

    • @ UKWendy – I think Corey is taking it seriously; but he’s not stepping over that line between Captain and dictator. Monty needs to relax and realize the players will show up and play for him. He doesn’t need to force the issue.


      06/03/2010 at 5:32 pm

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