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Clarke & Westwood disappointed with Faldo

Darren Clarke has blamed Nick Faldo for continuing the Ryder Cup row as he and Lee Westwood expressed their disappointment at Mark James' resignation as vice-captain.

Two of Europe’s top golfers have come out in support of their former captain, who was asked to resign on Tuesday in the wake of the storm over his book detailing his captaincy at Brookline in 1999.

"I'm very disappointed," Clarke said ahead of the Volvo Scandinavian Masters in Stockholm. "I think Mark James was a fantastic captain. He wrote a book to try and give an inside view of what went on.

"I've read most of the book and there was nothing that particularly bad in it. He did a fantastic job as captain and he would have been equally good, if not better, as a vice-captain.

"You have a certain person who took great offence to it and decided, even though he spends his time in America, that Mark James shouldn't be anything to do with the Ryder Cup. Everybody else has let it go.

"If you read the book he is more than complimentary about Nick, saying what a great record he had and all that. The Tournament Committee gave Jesse a 10-0 vote of support at Loch Lomond, you can't ask for anything more than that.

"I think he's been very, very hard done by. I think it's extremely unfair and it's a great shame that some people have been baying for his head."

Clarke & Westwood line up a putt at the 1999 Ryder Cup. Allsport.

Westwood questioned the make-up of the Ryder Cup Committee which contains just one person (Neil Coles) with playing experience of a Ryder Cup. Coles also admitted he had not actually read the book.

"I'm disappointed as I think Mark had a lot to offer and it's a shame that he won't be there to offer that experience," said Westwood.

"I'm not surprised that he resigned. The matter had to be finalised but it's surprising that the initial vote (by the Tournament Committee) should be overturned.

"I find it quite disturbing that the decision was left to a team of officials where just one has Ryder Cup playing experience. How would the others know what affect Mark's selection would have had on the team."

Meanwhile, the co-author of 'Into the Bear Pit' has dismissed Faldo's claims that the 1999 Ryder Cup captain 'fabricated' a tale concerning a good luck note to the European team at Brookline.

Writer Martin Hardy said: "Nowhere in the book does it say he sought the views of all the players. It actually says 'I decided to seek the views of a few other people including some players and the reaction was the same. Bin it.'

"I think Faldo would be best served by reading the book before commenting."

 

 

 

 

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