Harrington On Ryder Cup Rookie MacIntyre: “The Great Thing About Bob He’s A Tough Nut”.

Immediate past captain Padraig Harrington has handed Robert MacIntyre a glowing confidence lift just weeks away from the Ryder Cup in Rome.

MacIntyre, along with England’s Tommy Fleetwood, earned the final two automatic qualifying spots into Luke Donald’s European side and with MacIntyre a first Scot since Stevie Gallacher in 2014 to be pulling on the European team colours.

Harrington, and a playing veteran of six European Teams, led Europe two years into battle along the shores of Lake Michigan however it was a red-hot USA side that sent Harrington’s men packing.

However, with four new faces in the side heading to the Italian capital, and including Oban’s favourite golfing son, Harrington reckons the likes of MacIntyre will do Europe proud.

The champion Irish golfer said: “It’s great Bob qualified automatically, and all he has to do is to trust himself.  Just be himself and be comfortable in his own skin which I think Bob is.

“We know Bob’s won on the host course, so he knows the course well and that’s a plus.

“He just needs to go there and play his own game.  He doesn’t need to do anything else.

“We saw how well he played back at the Scottish Open, so Bob just needs to play the golf that earned him a place on the team, as see where it goes.

“The great thing about Bob is that he’s a tough nut.  I can tell you that and he’s quite fun to be around, so I think he will do very well in Luke’s team, and his team-mates will be comfortable playing alongside him on the golf course”.

Harrington was speaking following a second round 69 to make the cut right on the two-under mark at the Horizon Irish Open at the K. Club.

Gleneagles attached Calum Hill sensationally grabbed three eagles and three birdies in his Irish Open second round 65 to be well in contention tied in second spot at 10-under-par and just three shots behind the leading duo of England’s Jordan Smith (65) and India’s Shubhanker Sharma (66).

Hill holed a nine-foot putt for on four, chipped-in from 124-yards out at the par-4 ninth hole and drained a 35-foot putt for eagle at the 10th while he birdied two of his closing three holes.

He said: “It was a very good day’s golf though I didn’t know where it was going where I started but then you throw in a few eagles and things got a bit brighter, so it was good.

“With the eagle at nine, I didn’t quite catch my 50-degree wedge the way I wanted to but there was a roar from the green, so a bit of good fortune there/

“What would be nice now for tomorrow is a few more eaglaes and I will be well up there.”

Glaswegian Scott Jamieson was lying at eight-under with a hole to play that included holing a whopping 54-foot putt for an eagle ‘3’ at the par-5 18th he was playing as his ninth.

However, the Florida-based Scot gave two shots back with a closing double-bogey ‘6’ in his score of 66 to be at nine-under.

And Grant Forrest produced a bogey-free 67 to be heading into golf’s ‘moving day’ at seven-under.

World No. 2 and former champ, Rory McIlroy again left a huge Irish home crowd wondering, first producing a stunning eagle ‘3’ that spun back into the cup at the par-6 16th but gave the two shots back at the next ahead of a closing birdie in his round 70.

McIntyre heads into day three sharing 25th place at five-under.


Next week’s DP World Tour flagship BMW PGA Championship will feature all dozen members of the European Ryder Cup side along with Captain Luke Donald and his current four vice-captains.

For many including MacIntyre it will be the last regular tournament before tee-off on September 25th in Rome.

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