G-Mac: EurAsia Cup perfect warm-up

Graeme McDowell reckons this week’s EurAsia will provide Europe with the perfect preparation for the Ryder Cup later in the year.

Europe are 4/9 favourites with Paddy Power to take the victory at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club in Malaysia, but the unpredictable nature of match play golf means victory is no certainty.

McDowell, the highest ranked man in the field at World No 14, is the only player in the European team that played in the ‘Miracle at Medinah’ in 2012, but many of his team-mates are right in the qualifying battle for the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.

Thomas Bjorn, Victor Dubuisson, Jamie Donaldson and Stephen Gallacher are all currently in qualifying positions, while Joost Luiten, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and Pablo Larrazabal are all knocking on the door.

With so much of the team potential starters for Gleneagles, McDowell believes it makes this week’s event all the more important.

“One of the toughest parts of the Ryder Cup is putting pairings together, and getting foursomes pairings right,” said McDowell.

“That’s why a tournament like this, the EurAsia Cup, to me is something that’s very, very important for both The European Tour and the Asian Tour. Asia is the main area of growth for the game of golf in the world, so it’s a natural place for The European Tour.

“It’s obviously a big part of the European Tour and to have a Europe versus Asia match is something that our schedule needs from a Ryder Cup point of view.

“We need this event to become something very special, something the guys look forward to and something that is part of Ryder Cup Team building; a chance to put ten guys together, come out here and play against a good team and try some pairings and really enjoy playing team golf.

“Team golf is very different from what we are used to as individuals because you’re playing for each other.

“You just don’t want to let your team mates down and there is a lot of extra pressure from that, but it’s also one of the main reasons why European Teams have been so successful.”

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