Nick Faldo relying on Padraig Harrington
Nick Faldo described Padraig Harrington as a fine sleeper but the European captain will need the Irishman to wake up by the time the visitors begin their Ryder Cup defense against the United States.
The Europeans jetted into Kentucky on Monday well-rested and eager to get their first look at the Valhalla layout which will provide the battleground for the 37th Ryder Cup.
Faldo described the European mood as high-spirited but that did not include a weary Harrington after the British Open and PGA championship winner caught up on his sleep before a tense three days of competition.
“Our Open Champion is a fine sleeper,” Faldo told reporters during a news conference shortly after landing at Louisville International Airport. “He had four sleeps, as I would call it.
“The guys are resting hard.
“The back of the plane may have been enjoying things a little bit, I’m not too sure, I didn’t go down there much. Everybody was in very good spirits.”
Since claiming his second major of the season at the PGA Championship in August, Harrington has struggled, missing the cut in his next two events and tying for 55th at the BMW Championship.
Those three results failed to qualify Harrington for a spot in the elite 30-player field for the season-ending Tour Championship next week in Atlanta, leaving the Irishman focused on the task at hand.
“He’s rested. I spoke to him. I’m very pleased,” said Faldo. “We’re very pleased, the way guys that played last week in Germany, obviously Robert Karlsson won, and the rest of the guys played very well.
“Outside of that, the rest of the team is rested, and Padraig is one of them.
“He’s had the weeks off. I chatted with him and he knew what he was doing with his schedule, so the guys have been practicing and kept themselves all light and well oiled, that was kind of one of my requests.
“The team is raring to go.”