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Captain Pavin prepared to drop Tiger Woods at Ryder Cup

Corey Pavin and Tiger Woods
Pavin (left) says Woods will do whatever the team needs

United States Ryder Cup captain Corey Pavin has told the BBC he would not be afraid to drop world number one Tiger Woods from the team if he had to.

Woods is in the team for the match against Europe at Celtic Manor on 1-3 October as a wildcard pick but has an unremarkable record in the team format.

"I am going to treat every player the same," Pavin told BBC Radio 5 live.

"The objective is to win the match and that's what I'm going to be trying to do, whatever that takes."

For all his individual success, Woods has struggled in the opening foursomes and fourballs at previous Ryder Cups.


He has endured a torrid year, with his high-profile marriage break-up and divorce, but Pavin said he trusted Woods's ability to deal with the task in hand.

"For me it's how he's playing golf - that's my concern as far as the Ryder Cup goes," said the US captain.

"If in my judgement I think Tiger is to play five matches, or should play four or three then that is what I will do - that's my call as captain and I'll just have to wait and see what happens.

"He told me he'll do whatever is necessary to help the team win and that is going to be my call.

"I will probably make that decision on the fly but I'm not afraid to not play him every match, that's for sure."

The US will be looking for their first win on foreign soil since 1993 when the tournament starts in Wales next month.

Woods could be partnered by world number two Phil Mickelson, but despite being team-mates at five previous Ryder Cups they have only played together twice, on the same day in 2004, when they lost both matches.

"I'm not afraid to put anybody with anybody," said Pavin.

Tiger Woods (left) and Phil Mickelson
Woods (left) and Mickelson lost twice in one day in 2004

"Any pairing is possible. Do I rule it out [Woods and Mickelson]? No."

It was skipper Hal Sutton's idea six years ago to send his two biggest names out as a pair at the top of the order.

However, in the fourballs on the first morning of the event, one went right and one went left off the first tee and Colin Montgomerie birdied the hole for a lead that he and partner Padraig Harrington never relinquished.

Despite this, Sutton stuck to his guns and Woods and Mickelson took on Lee Westwood and Darren Clarke in the afternoon foursomes and were once again beaten.

The match is best known for Mickelson's sliced drive at the last, which forced a clearly angry Woods to take a penalty drop away from a fence, and handed victory to their opponents.

Despite Pavin's pronouncement, it is far more likely that Woods will team up with world number four Steve Stricker, with whom he won four out of four matches at the Presidents Cup last year.

"I will certainly be asking the players who they want to play with and hopefully it will all work out," added Pavin.

Europe: Luke Donald (England), Ross Fisher (England), Peter Hanson (Sweden), Padraig Harrington (Ireland), Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spain), Martin Kaymer (Germany), Graeme McDowell (Northern Ireland), Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland), Edoardo Molinari (Italy), Francesco Molinari (Italy), Ian Poulter (England), Lee Westwood (England).

United States: Stewart Cink, Rickie Fowler, Jim Furyk, Dustin Johnson, Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Hunter Mahan, Phil Mickelson, Jeff Overton, Steve Stricker, Bubba Watson, Tiger Woods.

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see also
US Ryder Cup team profiles
07 Sep 10 |  Golf
European Ryder Cup team profiles
29 Aug 10 |  Golf
Woods named in US Ryder Cup team
07 Sep 10 |  Golf
Woods misses Ryder qualification
16 Aug 10 |  Golf
Molinari earns European wildcard
29 Aug 10 |  Golf
Kaymer wins controversial USPGA
16 Aug 10 |  Golf
Woods is not certain pick - Pavin
12 Aug 10 |  Golf
Woods questions Ryder Cup place
09 Aug 10 |  Golf
US secure emphatic Ryder Cup win
21 Sep 08 |  Golf
Fowler maintains lead at Memorial
06 Jun 10 |  Golf

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