A Rory McIlroy-Graeme McDowell partnership at the Ryder Cup isn’t a sure thing anymore.
European captain Paul McGinley admitted Monday that he is having second thoughts about putting the two stars together – but it has nothing to do with the ongoing lawsuit between McIlroy and his former management company.
“If I don’t decide to play them, it would be for tactical reasons, not for any other reason,” McGinley said Monday during the opening news conference at Gleneagles. “It’s not like these guys are written in stone. They are not a formidable fourball pairing that’s unbeatable.”
McIlroy and McDowell have been paired together six times (all but one session) over the past two Ryder Cups, but they’ve posted only a 2-3-1 mark.
The Northern Irishmen have been longtime friends but their relationship has been strained over McIlroy’s lawsuit with Dublin-based Horizon Sports Management, which includes allegations against McDowell. In a blog post for the BBC this weekend, G-Mac expressed a desire to renew their partnership this week at Gleneagles.
The captain, though, might have other ideas.
“Three or four months ago,” McGinley said, “I had a very strong view that they would have been (partners), but the more I look at their statistics and the more I look at the different value I have with them, I’m thinking there may be a value in not doing it. But if I don’t do it, it certainly won’t be because of any issues.”