Ryder Cup hopes pinning on Italian Open
BY Bruce Young | European PGA Tour | 2014 70° OPEN D'ITALIA LINDT | Preview | 27 Aug 2014
The 71 º Open D’Italia takes the European Tour to Torino in Italy and for the first time to the Circolo Golf Torino – La Mandria.
The Italian brothers Francesco and Edoardo Molinari begin as favourites on sentimental grounds but Francesco perhaps deserves to be the favourite on paper as well.
Francesco is one of the leading world ranked players in the field, the actual honour of being the leading world ranked player in the field going to Stephen Gallacher.
Molinari won the event in 2006 although not at this venue but he has played well enough against many stronger fields of late.
Molinari is on the outside looking in as far as Ryder Cup representation is concerned and a good week might just do the trick for him in the eyes of Captain Paul McGinley.
Gallacher won in Dubai earlier in the season and has recorded several top tens since. He too has the added incentive of a top two this week earning him an automatic Ryder Cup sport.
“There are a lot of things on my mind this week," said Gallacher. "The most difficult thing for me this week is trying to focus just on the golf. If I play well and finish in the top two then I am a Ryder Cup player and that is something that I have dreamed about my whole life.
“Everyone wants to ask about The Ryder Cup, or talk to you about it or just wish you all the best which is all great but, as I said, it makes it very difficult to get it out of your mind which is what a part of you wants to do. But the whole thing is really exciting for me – that is the main feeling I have. To be a Scotsman who lives 35 miles from Gleneagles trying to get into the team brings a lot of hope and expectation and pressure, but most of all it is an exciting week for me.”
Marc Warren comes off of a win in Denmark and several other impressive efforts earlier including a very solid 15th place finish at the PGA Championship. On that alone he must be a real chance.
Joost Luiten is another who could use a good week to impress McGinley.
The Australians in the field are those who have played regularly in Europe this season, Richard Green, Wade Ormsby and Brett Rumford.