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Golf chiefs pledge to investigate cup leaks

European Tour chief executive George O’Grady admitted his concern over the reputation of golf after irregular betting patterns preceded yesterday’s Ryder Cup captaincy announcement.

Colin Montgomerie was confirmed as Europe’s captain at Celtic Manor next year in Dubai, but when his name was first seriously mentioned in Abu Dhabi two weeks ago after a meeting of the tournament players’ committee his odds suddenly plummeted from 50-1 to as low as 1-2.

Jose Maria Olazabal was initially seen as the likely candidate until committee member Montgomerie was asked to leave the meeting while his position was discussed.

Two weeks ago O’Grady confirmed no decision had been reached at the meeting, but admitted the Tour were aware of the betting movement and today confirmed an investigation had been completed.

"We are concerned. Any rumour that in any way tarnishes golf’s unique reputation concerns everyone from the Tour and the tournament committee," said O’Grady (pictured).

"We did what we said we would do in Abu Dhabi when newspaper articles mentioned the betting situation. We investigated it.

"We obviously cannot get anywhere with the betting companies as they are private contracts but Betfair invited us to talk to them and we did. They feel the whole market has moved in response to newspaper comment on some leak.

"We can’t really believe anyone in the committee room has used the information, but we have discussed it today.

"The entire committee is concerned to make sure that nothing like that ever has a chance to happening again because the committee will be appalled that someone has however inadvertently leaked it.

"The amount of sums we are told were involved on the swing of betting is minuscule.

"We have completed whatever investigation we can complete and we will take great care in the future."

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