Ryder Cup Spots at Stake in Germany


European TourAfter a couple of quiet weeks due to the PGA Championship and the WGC-NEC Invitational, the European Tour gets back into high gear as it heads into Munich, Germany for the BMW International Open.
With Ryder Cup spots on the line for several players, European captain Bernhard Langer will be on hand to watch what unfolds in the last tournament before he announces his two wild card selections.
Langer himself will not be playing in the event in which he has finished runner-up a record four times. Staged in his native country, it is the only European Tour event held on German soil that Langer has not won.
But the Langer will have other things on his mind, such as which players will play their way onto the team and also which players he sees that deserve to be captains selections.
Going into this week, six players have already qualified for the European team starting with Padraig Harrington, who leads the Euro Ryder Cup world points list.
Unlike how the U.S. team is put together, the European system takes the five leading players on the Ryder Cup world points list and then selects the leading five players - not otherwise qualified - from the European Ryder Cup points list to achieve their top 10. Captain Langer will then add his two wild card picks to fill out the roster.
Harrington is followed on the world points list by Sergio Garcia, Darren Clarke, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Lee Westwood. France's Thomas Levet has also secured a spot on the team with his position on the second points list - or money list.
Speaking of Westwood, it was at this tournament a year ago that the affable Englishman returned from the golfing abyss to capture his first title in almost three years.
The 32-year-old Westwood, who in 2000 won six times in Europe, seven times around the world and in the process snatched the Volvo Order of Merit title away from Colin Montgomerie, reached as high as fourth in the world before virtually falling off the face of the earth.
He eventually dropped to 215th in the world and after slow climb back to respectability, grabbed the title last year with a brilliant final-round 66 to beat Alex Cejka by three strokes. Later in the year, he won the Dunhill Links Championship. Westwood is currently ranked 43rd in the world.
Joining the European team in Germany will be former BMW International champion John Daly. Daly's one stroke victory over Harrington in 2002 was the two-time major winners first title since claiming the 1995 British Open.
This is the seventh straight year in which Golf Club MunchenNord-Eichenried is playing host and the 12th time overall. The European Tour moves to Switzerland next week for the Omega European Masters at Crans-sur-Sierre, where Ernie Els is the defending champion.
Related links:
  • TGC Airtimes

  • Full Coverage - BMW International Open

  • Ryder Cup Standings