Jamie Donaldson cemented his Ryder Cup place and Hunter Mahan made a case for one by winning the Czech Masters and Barclays respectively. Both tourneys had an exciting final day. Steve Palmer picked Hunter Mahan because he likes and has won on the Ridgway track. My reasoning was different: he was upset to be left out of their Ryder Cup team last time at Medinah and is pitching for a place. Pitching is probably not the best word as the one weakness of his game is his chipping. He played the final nine immaculately before hitting his drive on the 18th way to the left, chipped back on the fairway and messed up his pitch to the green.Nerves. He still got up and down from a lousy lie to win the tourney.
Steve Palmer is in a rich vein of form by finding another winner for me and Paul Waring’s final bogeys cost him a top ten place and me. Poor old Steve is doing doubles so he is not building up his wedding fund for the celebration next weekend. I liked the banter from his mates on the forthcoming nuptials: marriage is like going fishing with a vegan. With my normal incompetence I flagged up Patrick Reed as one of my fancies and then I realised Steve had not recommended him and I had not backed him – I thought that going onto the final day I had two in the top ten.
Jamie Donaldson has had a great season and is an automatic pick alongside Rory. Henrik Stensen, Martin Kaymer. Tomas, Justin Rose, Sergio and Victor Dubuisson. Graeme McDowell is nailed on for the ninth automatic berth. This leaves out the old warhorses Donald, Poulter and Westwood and the in form players Eduardo Molinari, Marc Warren and Stephen Gallacher, from which Paul McGinlay must select three.