PEPP LEADS TI­TLE RACE Ed­die in front but he’s not chas­ing Ry­der Cup glory or US riches

Daily Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - GOLF - BY NEIL MCLEMAN @Neilm­cle­man

ED­DIE PEP­PERELL in­sisted he is in no rush for the Ry­der Cup or play­ing full-time in Amer­ica af­ter rac­ing into a three-shot lead at the Bri­tish Masters.

Uber-confident Matt Wal­lace, who could join him in the fi­nal group to­day, has de­clared he wants to em­u­late Ian Poul­ter and be Post­man 2 in fu­ture Euro­pean teams.

But quirky Pep­perell has shown he is a dif­fer­ent char­ac­ter in his off-beat blog and quirky Twit­ter post­ings.

The mod­est Qatar Masters win­ner claimed he would need a bot­tle of red wine to take his mind off win­ning the £500,000 first prize to­mor­row and climb­ing fur­ther up the rank­ings. And un­like Wal­lace, the world No.50 claimed he had not pined to be in Paris.

“Not when I was hand­fuls deep in Thorn­ton’s choco­lates,” he said. “I was quite happy where I was.

And I wasn’t feel­ing very well, so I was just on the sofa all week.

“I love watch­ing the Ry­der Cup. I al­ways feel if I’m not there then I get to watch some TV, and if I’m there, I have to be stressed for a few days.

“Of course I would like to be part of it. If it hap­pens, great. If it doesn’t, then I’m pretty happy do­ing what I’m do­ing.” Pep­perell, who does not have a hat spon­sor, was left choco­late by tour­na­ment host Justin Rose af­ter his broad hints ear­lier this week.

“The same hasn’t hap­pened with Ann Sum­mers yet,” he joked. The Ox­ford star said he had watched his bizarre first-round hole-in-one “about a thou­sand times” – and he will still be seen in Europe next sea­son af­ter his 69 in the Wal­ton Heath wind yes­ter­day.

“I’m not in­ter­ested in play­ing in Amer­ica in a full-time ca­pac­ity,” he said. “I wouldn’t want to leave my dog be­hind.”

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