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After Europe were put to the sword in a 19-9 defeat at the 2020 Ryder Cup, the 2010 captain, Colin Montgomerie (opens in new tab), feels that more could have been done to avoid the record loss.
Speaking to the BBC at the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic, (opens in new tab) the eight-time European Tour Order of Merit winner opened up on the mistakes that led to the brutal defeat, suggesting that possibly the best 12 players weren’t on the team and that Harrington didn’t pick the best pairings.
“Last year, too many mistakes were made. Yes, the US played well, but Europe didn’t play to their potential for the first time in my memory and we have to do that to have a chance in Rome. It was a heavy and poor defeat. We need to have a bit of a rethink about how we pick the team and how we get our top 12 playing.
"Were our top 12 playing in that Ryder Cup? Possibly not. Were they playing in the right groups? Possibly not. Would it have changed the result? Possibly not. But it wouldn’t have been a record defeat and that was a shame, so we’ve got to get that back on track in a hurry.
After the battering, thoughts and attention turn to Rome in 2023 (opens in new tab), with the 58-year-old worried that if something isn't done, then the US will rule the Ryder Cup for many years to come. Who does Monty think is the man to take over the European captaincy? Well, along with several other Ryder Cup stars (opens in new tab), the Scotsman believes that Luke Donald (opens in new tab) is the man for the job.
“The safe pair of hands is Luke", said Montgomerie. "The safe pair of hands is safer than another risk. We don’t need another risk at this time because if we lose in Rome I don’t fancy our chances in New York at Bethpage Black (in 2025).
"The crowd are going to be unruly and that’s only because a New York crowd is loud and unruly. We’ve got to get a result in Rome or we might lose three in a row.
"We need to have a bit of a rethink about how we pick the team and how we get our top 12 playing. We need to find another Viktor Hovland and another Jon Rahm, and quickly."
Matt studied Sports Journalism at Southampton Solent University, graduating in 2019. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly and the PGA, he covers all aspects of the game, from Tour news to equipment testing and buyers’ guides. Taking up the game at the age of six, Matt currently holds a handicap of 3 and despite not having a hole in one…yet, he has had two albatrosses. His favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.
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