Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

Stars call for new Ryder Cup date

Rory McIlroy (centre)

Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood have joined the call for a new date to be found for the Ryder Cup.

Monday's thrilling victory at Celtic Manor was still all the talk when the Dunhill Links Championship began at St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns on Thursday. McIlroy has gone from calling the match "just an exhibition" to "the greatest event in golf by far" - and as such believes it deserves a better place in the schedule.

"I think it would be great to have it at the end of August or start of September - just because the weather is that little bit better," said the 21-year-old. "It's a huge thing for Europe and I think it is definitely something they need to get right because in four years' time at Gleneagles it could be pretty bad."

He added: "I don't think it hindered the Ryder Cup in any way to play it over four days this year, even though it wasn't supposed to.

"Start it on a Thursday and end on the Sunday could be an idea, so you have that little bit of margin for error."

Westwood, who needs a top-two finish this weekend to dethrone Tiger Woods as world number one, added: "I think the Ryder Cup is so prestigious and such a big event now that priority should be given to it with regard to dates.

"I just think that common sense has to be used somewhere along the line.

"Shift it forward a couple of weeks - something must be able to be done."

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