Monty on that Poulter comment: 'Oh god – this might end in tears'October 5, 2018 The Scoop
Ryder Cup 2010 captain Colin Montgomerie sits down with NCG to discuss that bold Ian Poulter claim, the USA's downfall, and who should be the next skipper
Presumably your pairings knew who they were going to be playing with?
Of course they knew what was going on. McIlroy and McDowell knew they would be playing together, the Molinaris did, Ross Fisher and Padraig Harrington the same. This was all talked about in advance.
The Americans seemed to be ‘who wants to play with Reed?‘ And no one really wants to play with Reed, so Woods you play with Reed.
There didn’t seem be any authority there at all, there didn’t seem to anyone in charge. The team seemed to be making the decisions as opposed to somebody taking the whip and saying come on. It was over before the singles, 10-6 away from home and they seemed deflated.
It does seem strange that Molinari and Fleetwood knew they were playing together weeks before, Poulter knew he wasn’t playing the first session, and so on. They were all playing for the team and they didn’t want to get points for themselves. That’s what we are.
Webb Simpson and Bubba Watson seemed to be in a pod of their own?
It appeared to be. The team didn’t seem to gel at all. There wasn’t any passion involved, it was as if many had said their seasons had finished at the Tour Championship and this was an extra that they didn’t really want.
It was like the Saturday morning was a bit chilly, they looked like they wanted to get back to the heat of America and where the money is. It seemed that way to me and that’s the result you get with that atmosphere and body language.
Back to 2010, what did you think when you heard Ian Poulter say ‘I will deliver a point’ before his singles match?
There is a point that you shouldn’t cross (laughs) and you do hope that his confidence, where he has said it and then said it to the camera, you do think ‘Oh god, hang on a minute – let’s hope he does now as this might end in tears’.
Golf is a fickle game where over 18 holes of matchplay anything can happen but you have to give him credit, his confidence is second to none and his belief is second to none.
He’s not the best golfer in the world, he’s ranked in the 30s, but his belief and confidence is. He’s got more belief and confidence than Dustin Johnson has. He’s not the golfer but he went and beat him. You can’t knock it in any way.
As a player, what is it like leading the team off in a session?
It’s a great honour. I led us off in the fourballs, foursomes and the singles and it’s a big ask. You are usually up against some of their better players but you tend to have a strong player with you which I did.
My view was that if the captain has got trust in me then that’s good enough for me. He has supported me by putting me out there and it’s my job to bring you back a point or half a point.
You were our talisman for a collection of matches, how did you handle yourself in terms of expectations?
I would hear people say ‘that will be a point’ but you say this isn’t very easy as I was going out in some of the first games which are big matches.
But I loved it, I really enjoyed what I was doing and I’m a great believer that if you enjoy something you’re good at it. So I did OK. I enjoyed the whole aspect of it and I enjoyed the fact that I was put under pressure of winning a point. I enjoyed playing against America and against the top guys and I look back on it now with fond memories.
It was great part of my career.
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