West of Ireland Golf Classic
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Rocca hoping to end poor run of form

Defending champion Constantino Rocca is likely to be limiting his ambitions at the North West of Ireland Open starting on Thursday.

The out-of-form Italian's principal aim will be to end a calamitous run of seven missed cuts in a row.

Rocca, who beat Woods in their 1997 Ryder Cup singles duel and has five European Tour victories, has not played the weekend rounds of a tournament since finishing 54th in the English Open in June.

"I've not played the driver well and when you don't hit the fairways it is very difficult to make birdies. And my putting is also not very good," the 43-year-old former factory worker said.

Rocca, who hopes to make Europe's 2001 Ryder Cup team at The Belfry but who has not won for 12 months, added: "I have three weeks before the start of the Ryder Cup qualifying and if I don't play very good then maybe I will go to my old teacher, David Leadbetter."

The event, a joint European and Challenge Tour tournament at at the Slieve Russell course, also features several other former Ryder Cup players, with Peter Baker, Steven Richardson and Ireland's Des Smyth, Eamonn Darcy and Philip Walton all due to play.

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