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Colin Montgomerie wants 8 wild cards to choose from
June 6, 2010

Europe’s Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie wants to have at least eight players in his sights for the three wildcard places in his team to play the United States.

Montgomerie will follow former captain Bernhard Langer’s example and whittle his eight down to three when he knows the nine automatic qualifiers at the end of the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles on Aug. 29.

“It’s going to be a very difficult choice but the three I pick will have to complement the players who have qualified,” Montgomerie told a news conference at Celtic Manor, venue for the match against the U.S. in October, on the eve of this week’s Wales Open.

“I’ll be looking at pairings at that stage, who I’m going to pick to play with who,” he added.

“It’s the same thing as Bernhard did with me. I’m sure that I was picked in 2004 because Padraig Harrington was already qualified. I was picked to play with him and we played the first three matches together.

The captain is expecting all eight contenders to be at the final event in Europe’s campaign but he was not ruling out players who do not make it to Gleneagles, particularly Europeans taking part in the Fedex Cup in America the same week.

Despite initially intimating that if any of the eight were not at Gleneagles they should not expect to get a wildcard, Montgomerie said it was not cast in stone.

“I cannot tell players where they should play but I will be very disappointed if the candidates do not participate at Gleneagles,” he said.

Montgomerie was asked if he would play is team before the third day’s 12 singles, Montgomerie was unequivocal: “Yes - barring illness or injury,” he said.

For this week’s Wales Open, six of Montgomerie’s potential team have decided to skip the chance to play the Celtic Manor TwentyTen Ryder Cup course, world number three Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Paul Casey, Rory McIlroy Henrik Stenson and Harrington, who has just undergone a knee operation.

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