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Page last updated at 07:32 GMT, Wednesday, 13 May 2009 08:32 UK

Wales confident of 2010 Ryder Cup

By Peter Shuttleworth

The Celtic Manor hotel
Sir Terry Matthews spent 100m on redeveloping the Celtic Manor

Wales' Ryder Cup chiefs are confident Celtic Manor will successfully host the 2010 showpiece, dismissing suggestions it could be moved.

The Newport host venue is suffering from the economic downturn after making "50 to 60" people redundant.

But Celtic Manor insists the global economic crisis will have no impact on their plans to host the Ryder Cup.

The Welsh Assembly Government and Celtic Manor have spent about £51m on bringing the showpiece event to Wales.

Asked if he has heard the stories about Wales not hosting the 2010 Ryder Cup, John Jermaine, chairman of The Ryder Cup Wales, said: "People have come to me and said 'I've heard rumours'.

"But I don't know where they have come from.

"I haven't spoken to anyone at Celtic Manor or at Ryder Cup Wales who has any doubt about Wales hosting the Ryder Cup in 2010, we're all wholly confident.

"Yes, life is difficult and financial people are having to be careful with money but we are managing it well with the support of the Welsh Assembly and the Sports Council for Wales.

"The Celtic Manor Resort is only reacting to the economic trends that the whole world is suffering from.


"They have done the right thing, lowering overheads to reflect the reduction in conference business that is an inevitable as result of the economic problems.

"But we have fulfilled all the obligations we set out in the initial bid. And Sir Terry [Matthews, Celtic Manor Resort's billionaire owner] has done everything he said he would, he has honoured every obligation."

The 2010 event at Celtic Manor will be the first to be staged on a course specifically built for a Ryder Cup - and it was constructed at a cost of £16m, a sum that includes the new Twenty Ten clubhouse.

The Celtic Manor Resort and Matthews, the telecommunications entrepreneur, paid for costs inside the resort boundary while the Welsh Assembly Government paid for all associated costs outside.

The Ryder Cup Wales was established and part funded by the Welsh Assembly Government to deliver the bid's obligations and the private company receives public investment and sponsorship.

A total of £35m of public funding has been spent on ensuring Wales meets all of its commitments, including improving road links and its legacy duties to boost golf participation in the country.

"I guess you have to understand the fear people have because the government have put in so much money," said Celtic Manor Resort chief executive Dylan Matthews.

"We have had to adjust the plan but I wouldn't say it has hindered our plans.

We are absolutely delighted with the excellent progress made by all our partners, including the Celtic Manor Resort

European Tour spokesman

"The most viable adjustment was to let about 50 or 60 people go from employment and when you're a family business you don't like to do that type of thing."

And Matthews told BBC Sport that "90%" of the Ryder Cup investment had already been made.

"The current financial climate hasn't affected it that much, it's what we call mopping up," he said.

"The fact of the matter is the course has been running for about four years and it's bedding in.

"All of the spectator areas and the clubhouse is done. All we need to finish is the bus parking area and a bridge across the River Usk from the course to the practice green."

Ryder Cup spokesman Mitchell Platts "categorically denied" that there is a course on standby.

The European Tour, which is responsible for staging Ryder Cups in Europe, confirmed planning was well advanced for the 38th biannual event on 1-3 October, 2010.

"We are absolutely delighted with the excellent progress made by all our partners, including the Celtic Manor Resort," a spokesman told the BBC.

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see also
Europe raise Ryder wildcard quota
12 May 09 |  Golf
Ryder captains set for Wales Open
27 Apr 09 |  Golf
Anger at 'Ryder Cup' taxi plans
10 Mar 09 |  Wales
Jobs at risk at Ryder Cup hotel
16 Jan 09 |  South east
Monty to lead Europe at Ryder Cup
28 Jan 09 |  Golf
Pavin named US Ryder Cup captain
11 Dec 08 |  Golf
Celtic Manor 'to outdo Valhalla'
22 Sep 08 |  Golf
US secure emphatic Ryder Cup win
21 Sep 08 |  Golf
Wales plans Ryder charm campaign
20 Sep 08 |  Golf

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