BEFORE I tackle the weekend action I must start by saying how pleased I am that Paul McGinley has been named the European Ryder Cup captain for 2014.
Paul did all the groundwork: he had two successful stints leading Great Britain and Ireland in the Seve Trophy and was also vice-captain on two winning Ryder Cup teams.
He also holed the winning putt in the 2002 competition. (I forget who Europe’s captain was that year.)
McGinley is meticulous and congenial. Sometimes captains can be like headmasters but he’s not like that; he’ll be very approachable.
The fact that Rory McIlroy, Luke Donald and Ian Poulter all voiced their support spoke volumes and made it impossible not to pick him.
Also enjoying a good week was Jamie Donaldson, who won the Abu Dhabi Championship. It was the Welshman’s second European Tour win and credit must go to his swing coach because his technique is much improved and the work is paying off.
McIlroy’s debut with Nike clubs did not go so well, but I’m inclined to think it was just a bad week. Missing the cut is very unlike him, but he was in good company with Tiger Woods, and a month off will help Rory overcome teething problems.
Finally, well done to Brian Gay, who won a three-man play-off to claim his fourth PGA Tour title at the Humana Challenge in California.
Sam Torrance OBE is a multiple Ryder Cup-winning golfer and media commentator. Follow him on Twitter @torrancesam