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Montgomerie looking to seal Ryder Cup place

Colin Montgomerie is out to rubber-stamp his Ryder Cup place this week with a good result in the Scandinavian Masters.

Despite his best bid yet for a major when he led the British Open for two rounds, Montgomerie's joint 13th finish at Lytham 10 days ago coupled with Bernhard Langer's Dutch Open win last week, has left the Scot in one of the three places still under threat.

The Scot, returning to the tour after a week off following his Lytham bid, was pushed down to eighth spot in the table by Langer and now needs around 100,000 points to be sure of making one of the 10 automatic places.

"It was a fantastic win by Bernhard and great for Sam Torrance," said Montgomerie on Wednesday before attempting to lift his second Scandinavian title.

"Bernhard's experience will be greatly needed and he's the sort of player who can play with anybody, so that gives Sam an extra benefit.

"It does mean that eighth, ninth and 10th spots are under threat now, though, so I'll try and get rid of that problem this week and help Sam out. That's why I'm here.

"I'm playing in four of the five events left to count, so if I don't make it I've only myself to blame. It would be nice to get it done earlier than later, though.

"Two years ago I won by nine shots here, but I'll take anything to give Sam a bit of respite."

Montgomerie is also hoping Jesper Parnevik, who is looking for a hat-trick of Scandinavian victories, will perform well.

US Tour-based Parnevik lies only 34th on the Cup table, but can move into the top 20 with a 300,000-point first prize and then try to seal his place from three further events.

"It's a lot to ask, but the European team would be all the better if Jesper and Sergio Garcia made the team automatically," he said.

At the moment, that would be at the expense of Britain's ninth-placed Phillip Price and 10th spot Irishman Paul McGinley.

Price plays in Sweden but McGinley seems sure to lose his 10th spot because of giving the event a miss.

Montgomerie was asked about the disquieting slump of Lee Westwood, who is already in the European team for The Belfry, and whether he ever experienced the lack of focus that the Englishman has suffered, largely through starting a family.

"I never had that problem and kept my desire and will to win all through the births of our three children.

"It hurt in a number of ways but it kept me going in my career."

 


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