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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 September 2006, 14:18 GMT 15:18 UK
Woosnam voices Cup weather fears
Europe captain Ian Woosnam
Woosnam said the bunkers had been left unplayable
Europe captain Ian Woosnam has said he is seriously concerned by the prospect of bad weather affecting the Ryder Cup.

With the event set to start on Friday, news that the tail-end of Hurricane Gordon could be heading for Kildare is an unwelcome distraction for Woosnam.

"I think what we've got to worry about is whether we will we be able to play the golf course," he said.

Heavy rain and 40mph (65km/h) winds are expected on Wednesday, with the course already damp from earlier wet weather.

Rain on Monday saw bunkers flooded and required the greenkeeping staff to buy new rakes because of the deep furrows left from repair work.

"They had to rough the bunkers up to dry them out a little bit," added Woosnam.

"Two of our players were in bunkers today and basically just couldn't get the ball out, there's so many rake marks.

"When they do get raked now they will be raked more towards the greens. At least if it's lying in the groove mark you'll be going with it rather than across it."

I see Jose Maria Olazabal as a leader and Sergio Garcia being the young and up-and-coming bull

Europe captain Ian Woosnam

Meanwhile, tournament director David Garland said discussions would be held with Woosnam and US captain Tom Lehman over whether 'preferred lies' will be in operation when play starts.

'Preferred lies' allow for the ball to be moved by hand, cleaned and then replaced in a more playable position if - because of bad weather - it comes to rest, for instance, in standing rain water.

"We're out monitoring things and will keep doing that daily," said Garland.

"We never want to have placing of the ball, but sometimes you just have to."

RYDER CUP BLOG
Matt Slater, BBC Sport golf writer

Woosnam said the European players had spent a relaxed evening together after arriving in Kildare on Monday.

"We had a nice team meeting last night," he said.

"I did my little bit with an inspirational talk, we had a few beers and in the camp everybody's happy with everything."

But Woosnam's suggestion that Sergio Garcia, Europe's highest-ranked golfer and a veteran of three previous Ryder Cups, needed a "mentor" in compatriot Jose Maria Olazabal was a surprise.

"The Swedish guys (Robert Karlsson and Henrik Stensson) play a similar sort of game and obviously they speak Swedish and get on great together," he said.

"It's the same with Olazabal and Garcia. I see that as Olazabal being a little bit of a mentor, with Olazabal as a leader and Garcia being the young and up-and-coming bull."

US RYDER CUP TEAM

 

EUROPEAN RYDER CUP TEAM

 

SEE ALSO
Ryder Cup: Tuesday photos
19 Sep 06 |  Golf
Ryder Cup arrival photos
18 Sep 06 |  Golf


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