Justin Rose – playing in his first ‘home’ Ryder Cup this week - says he might have to sample the walk to the first tee today before doing it for the first time during competition tomorrow morning.
First revealed by bunkered.co.uk this summer, the players this week will walk through a tunnel in order to get to the first tee of the PGA Centenary Course. The tunnel is decorated with huge pictures of past Ryder Cup stars. The last picture on the side is the late Seve Ballesteros.
Rose, 34, said the tunnel would “change the dynamics” of the first tee atmosphere, for players and fans alike.
"I can only imagine that by the time you walk to the tee, you’re fully ready to go." - Justin Rose
“To be honest, we haven’t really walked it as yet,” he said, adding that most players have used a cart to get to the first tee in the last few days. “Might be a good idea just to walk it today just to experience it and sort of time it. That’s probably something I’ll do.
“Things will ramp up. The tunnel’s got some iconic images through it, and you’ll hear the crowd, the noise.”
He added: “I can only imagine that by the time you walk to the tee, you’re fully ready to go. There’s absolutely no doubt.”
Justin Rose brushes off Mickelson remark
Justin Rose, the current Scottish Open champion, said Phil Mickelson’s dig at the European team’s ‘litigation’ matters was a “bit of banter”. Mickelson was referring to the legal matter between Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell and their respective management disputes.
Mickelson used his press conference yesterday to stand up for his teammates, stating that they were closer than ever. “Not only are we able to play together, we also don’t litigate against each other, and that’s a real plus,” said Mickelson, who said he “couldn’t resist” the quip.
"It’s no real big deal." - Justin Rose
“We don’t have a problem with that at all,” replied Rose. “There’s no real angst between the players from that point of view at all in our team room. I’ve been observing Rory and G-Mac and they’ve been getting on great and playing golf, hanging out and having dinners together.”
Read more --> Mickelson takes aim at McIlroy and McDowell
The former US Open champ, who beat Mickelson at Medinah two years ago thanks to his heroics on the 17th green – where he drained a 50ft putt – said the atmosphere in the European team room was “fantastic”. He also added that Mickelson mentioned the comment to McIlroy at last night’s Gala Dinner, noting that it was purely just “banter” and that he was just wanting to “spice things up”.
“It’s no real big deal,” he said.
Henrik Stenson lined-up as potential partner for Justin Rose
Justin Rose is being touted as a potential partner for Stenson. The Swede is part of Rose’s practice fourball today, alongside Ian Poulter and Jamie Donaldson.
Read more --> Our picks for tomorrow's fourballs
Captains Paul McGinley and Tom Watson will announce their pairings for tomorrow’s opening fourballs later this afternoon at the Opening Ceremony, which will take place on the grounds of Gleneagles’ par-3 course. It kicks off at 4pm and is broadcast live on Sky Sports.