‘Strong team spirit is nat­u­ral’

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

THE US have em­ployed a Task Force and re­vamped their points sys­tem to try to end Europe’s Ry­der Cup dom­i­nance but one thing they can­not cre­ate is a team spirit that comes nat­u­rally, said Rory McIl­roy. Fed up with los­ing for the third suc­ces­sive edi­tion in Scot­land in 2014, the Amer­i­cans set up the 11man Task Force to iden­tify how they could com­pete bet­ter. Skip­per Davis Love III also cut the num­ber of au­to­matic qual­i­fiers from nine play­ers to eight and added an­other cap­tain’s pick to make four in all. “I think there comes a point where you maybe try a lit­tle too hard,” Euro­pean tal­is­man McIl­roy (car­i­ca­ture) told a news con­fer­ence at Hazel­tine Na­tional yes­ter­day. “As much as we talk about our blue­print in Europe, it’s not rocket science – all the guys get on pretty well to­gether. The cul­ture of the Euro­pean Tour is just a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent in terms of guys so­cialise a lit­tle bit more with each other.

“You’ve got Jack Nick­laus invit­ing all the Amer­i­cans over to his house for din­ner and try­ing to sort of re­ally bond the team to­gether which I think is a re­ally great thing for them,” said world No. 3 McIl­roy.

“But we’ve never re­ally needed to do that. That’s al­ways just been a nat­u­ral fit for us and a nat­u­ral thing to do.”

Love caused a stir when he said in a re­cent ra­dio in­ter­view that his side this week was “the best golf team maybe ever as­sem­bled”.

McIl­roy, how­ever, said Europe needed no added in­cen­tive as they sought to win the tro­phy for the ninth time in 11 at­tempts.

“I don’t think it’s hard for us to find ex­tra mo­ti­va­tion,” he ex­plained, “be­cause any­where you look whether it be the sea of (Amer­i­can) red you see on the golf course or com­ments made by the US cap­tain, that gives us so much mo­ti­va­tion al­ready.” – Reuters

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