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The Ryder Cup

The Ryder Cup

If you thought the job of picking 11 players for England’s World Cup team was hard enough, imagine being Thomas Bjorn, the Europe Ryder Cup team captain, who has to decide on the best players to represent the whole of Europe.
Eight of the 12-strong team are automatically chosen based on their rankings, but that leaves a big dilemma, how do you choose your final four?
The final qualifying tournament will be held in Denmark next week, but at the moment Francesco Molinari, Justin Rose, Tyrell Hatton and Tommy Fleetwood make up the top four qualifiers on the European points list. Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Alex Noren and Thorbjorn Olesen are the next four based on the World Points rankings.
Hatton, Fleetwood, Rahm, Noren and Olesen all played at the Ryder Cup venue Le Golf National in early summer at the French Open with Noren emerging as the winner, following on from Fleetwood who won in 2017.
For your remaining team members do you go for the players with recent experience of this amazing course?
The romantics among us may want to see Sergio Garcia among those selected, perhaps joined by Scotsman Russell Knox who came second at the French Open. Ian Poulter also tried his luck at Le Golf National and perhaps his fantastic form at previous Ryder Cups will put him in good stead to return to the tee 28-30 September. And the fourth choice maybe a fellow Scandinavian Henrik Stenson?
Le Golf National truly deserves to be hosting this eagerly anticipated battle and to be the Summer Olympics venue for 2024.
Just 20 miles west of Paris, Le Golf National offers two courses Aigle and Albatros, where the Ryder Cup will be played. Water comes into play from the first hole and the big hitters must curb their excesses to avoid dangers lurking inches from the fairways.
This beautifully crafted course allows for plenty of spectator viewing points as well if you are lucky enough to have tickets to watch the best golfers in the world fight for this hotly contested trophy.
The real temptation is to play it yourself, perhaps next Spring. With the tees forward this course is still very challenging, but keep your head and a good score is still possible and exceptionally rewarding.
You could also treat yourself to a stay at the stunning Trianon Palace in nearby Versailles where several top players chose to stay during the French Open.

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