What Fleet Street is saying, Ryder Cup Monday
Ian Poulter and Rory McIlroy turned up at Gleneagles Monday to practice while their teammates filed in gradually, seemingly leaving little to talk about. To the rescue Captain Paul McGinley!
To date the Fleet Street crowd at Britain's top papers have gently raised eyebrows at the possibility of McIlroy and Graeme McDowell partnering in this Ryder Cup, even though the Rory's legal row with Horizon Sports has dragged old buddy GMac into the mess. Both players have downplayed the issue and Captain Paul McGinley has agreed.
So it came as a "shock departure," writes James Corrigan in The Telegraph, that McGinley is now suggesting at Monday's news conference with Tom Watson that he may not be pairing the duo, with Corrigan noting "for months" McGinley has been adamant the Northern Irishman would be partnering again.
Ewan Murray of The Guardian was skeptical of McGinley's claims of a statistical study for his reasoning in splitting the former close mates.
Pressed on what "statistics" he had analysed, McGinley said: "As I say, I've got lots of options with them. But if I don't decide to play them, it would be for tactical reasons. It won't be for any other reasons."
The Daily Mirror's Neil McLeman stayed clear of the McGinley revelation and focused on Rory's assertion that five points from the lad will grab the Cup for Europe.
"If I get five points, we will probably win. It feels great to be here. I haven't really done much in the way of practice the last week so I just wanted to make sure I was ready to go Friday so that is why I got here a little early."
The Independent's Kevin Garside also focused on McIlroy, noting that he showed up at Gleneagles after a voluntary hiatus to refresh himself following the FedExCup playoffs.
The world's finest player declared himself rested and ready to go at Gleneagles after his social whirl either side of the Irish Sea. From nights out in Belfast and sponsor commitments in London to ringside seats at Wembley Arena and the Goals on Sunday sofa, McIlroy was as good as his word and left the clubs alone.
As for the American arrival, Oliver Brown took issue with Rickie Fowler's USA haircut, suggesting the "exhibition of thuggish jingoism" could fuel the necessary ingredients to make these matches "turn nasty, fast."
Ahhhh, that's the Fleet Street we love and know!