AS he holed out to complete his final round at Celtic Manor on Sunday, little did Colin Montgomerie know that a great weekend was unfolding.
The Twenty Ten course, home of this year’s Ryder Cup, played superbly for the Wales Open – almost as well as the popular Graeme McDowell, who did his own selection no harm at all with a fantastic final round 63 to win by three shots. But that was just the start for Monty as young Rhys Davies also continued to impress, surging into the world’s top 50 with a course record 62 for a second-place finish.
That’s one victory and three second-place finishes now for Davies – pleasing statistics for Monty, who will want nothing more than to pick a Welshman on merit to play in front of his home crowd come October.
Good things come in threes and another boost for Monty came across the water with Justin Rose claiming his first PGA Tour title in the Memorial Tournament in Ohio.
Rose’s talent has never been in question, but it was great to see him finally show his true colours to hold his nerve for a final round 66 and a three-shot victory.
Rose is the third English winner on American soil this season, after Paul Casey and Ian Poulter, and not only does it lift him up to 33 in the world, but it also puts him right back in the reckoning for a Ryder Cup place.
Justin is a dogged character, who will scrap to the end, that’s what makes him a good Ryder Cup pick. Put it this way, I’d rather play with him than against him.
Then, just when Monty thought it couldn’t get any better, it did. An opening round 69 was followed with a superb course record 62 yesterday on the Sunningdale New course to clinch one of the ten qualifying places for the Open Championship at St Andrews.
That’s a fantastic performance from Monty, who finished in a tie for second with Andrew Coltart, with Shane Lowry coming out on top.