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Southend's Euro Tour pro golfer Richard McEvoy: Americans playing mind games with Rory
5:00pm Thursday 27th September 2012 in Sport
I THINK it’s a little bit harsh for the American team to say they will be targeting Rory McIlroy in the Ryder Cup.
Rory’s obviously in the form of his life and is the best player in the world, so I think they are trying to heap the pressure onto him.
But I’m sure he’ll deal with it and, at the end of the day, he is just one member of the team.
There are 11 other members of the team and targeting one person won’t necessarily help them win the Ryder Cup.
And even if Rory plays and loses all five matches, Europe could still win.
So it’s all just a bit of mind games, which always happens all the time in the Ryder Cup because it is a very patriotic event.
I was watching a replay of Brookline in 1999 yesterday when things got a bit out of hand, and I’d hope they would not be a repeat of that again! But I’m sure the Americans will be well up for it, especially on home soil, and especially after losing four out of the last five.
You can be sure they will be doing everything they can to win.
Tiger Woods will have a big part to play, but he admits himself he has underperformed in the Ryder Cup.
I think that has been partly because of the pressure on him to win matches because he’s always been at the top of the world rankings when he has played.
And it’s also partly because he’s such an individual player, and I think that’s because he’s been so single-minded in his pursuit of winning majors.
They’ll be about 3,000 European fans there in Illinois and about 37,000 Americans.
And the European fans will have a massive part to play; Americans are loud anyway and they are going to be making a lot of noise here!
But the European team is fill of experienced players and Nicolas Colsaerts is the only rookie.
And Nic couldn’t be more laid back so I don’t think he’ll be affected by it.
I think this Ryder Cup is going to be won and lost on the greens. The way the Americans have set up the golf course – with it favouring their long hitters – means it will come down to who can hole out on the greens and make the most birdies really, as matches do.
In the past, when it’s been over here, we’ve slowed the greens right down because that suits us and not them because the greens are quicker in America.
But that’s all part and parcel of this competition being home and away because setting the courses to your advantage is one of the things you can do to help win the trophy.
I think it will be very, very tight and it could even come down to the last game on Sunday afternoon.
I hope we win, of course, but I’ve got a funny feeling that they will win. I would not bet on it, though, and I really hope our boys bring it back.
Richard McEvoy was talking to James Colasanti