‘Mr Ryder Cup’ Ian Poulter might well qualify for Le Golf National – but let’s say he doesn’t. Would you take him as a pick?
Yes, says Keel Timmins
Something didn’t quite feel right watching Rory McIlroy step up to be Europe’s cheerleader at Hazeltine. I mean, sure, bowing in front of the US team after draining an eagle putt and taunting Patrick Reed with hands aloft to his ears was a lot of fun to watch. I’m all for it.
But Europe already have a ready-made ringleader in the form of Mr Ryder Cup himself, Ian Poulter – a player that has been a merciless thorn in the US side for more than 10 years.
After missing out two years ago with an injury, captain Thomas Bjorn will surely be itching to let Poulter loose on the brash Americans at Le Golf National.
Besides, Poulter has shown this year that he still has plenty of game and can keep up with Europe’s best.
If he keeps up his current form, he’ll make the team on points.
If he doesn’t quite make the team on merit, it would be a no-brainer for Bjorn to turn to the Ryder Cup veteran to make up one of his three captain picks.
No, says James Savage
If he doesn’t qualify, I think it’s time to move on.
He’s still a great competitor but I genuinely don’t think any of the American team would fear him at Le Golf National.
We pined for him at Gleneagles and apart from chipping in once in a match that was halved he didn’t really have an impact.
In Rose, Garcia, Stenson and McIlroy we have four stalwarts who can guide our rookies through.
I feel with Rahm, Fleetwood, Noren, Casey, Hatton, Cabrera Bello, Fitzpatrick, Molinari, Pieters, Wiesberger, Levy, Luiten – there’s plenty to choose from.
Darren Clarke’s picks of Westwood and Kaymer did nothing to bring energy to the team at Hazeltine.
Whereas Thomas Pieters was a revelation.
It shows experience can be overrated.
I’d much rather plump for fearless rookies looking to prove themselves on the biggest stage.
More than happy to have Poulter there as a vice-captain but including him as a pick would look a bit desperate to me.