Pavin cool on McIlroy-Tiger grudge match

UNITED STATES captain Corey Pavin says he will not collude with Europe’s Colin Montgomerie to set up a Ryder Cup grudge match between Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy.

McIlroy has boasted he would fancy his chances against the world No1 who, he said, had lost his aura, while Woods responded by saying he would welcome the clash.

But despite the box-office appeal of the confident and in-form young Northern Irishman going head-to-head with a man who has won 14 Majors but struggled in the Ryder Cup, Pavin insists he and his opposite number have no interest in artificially engineering the match-up.

“I don’t think there’s any possibility of that,” he said. “I don’t think it’s in the spirit of what the Ryder Cup is all about and the way the pairings are supposed to happen.

“It would be by chance, or if either of us guessed right on what we wanted to accomplish.

“I don’t know if it’s really against the rules, but I think it’s just against kind of what golf stands for. I just don’t think it would be the right thing to do.”

Montgomerie is tipped to send out McIlroy and Graeme McDowell as his opening fourballs pair on Friday, meaning Pavin’s best chance of arranging the grudge match would be to choose Woods in the same slot.

McIlroy and McDowell were paired together once again yesterday in Europe’s practice session at Celtic Manor, which was delayed by further heavy rainfall.