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Robert MacIntyre has split with both his coach and caddie ahead of a crucial run that will determine his chances of playing in the Ryder Cup.
MacIntyre has become disillusioned with his game this season and told The Scotsman that he made the drastic changes to his team in a bid to rediscover his enjoyment for golf.
The Scot has parted ways with coach Simon Shanks and looper Mike Thomson after falling outside the world’s top 100 during a frustrating slump.
And with a five-week stretch of consecutive important events on the horizon, MacIntyre has reunited with his old coach David Burns and caddie Greg Milne, who helped him burst onto the scene four years ago.
He finished sixth at The Open art Royal Portrush in 2019 with the duo by his side and was named the DP World Tour Rookie of the Year a few months later.
But the man from Oban has slipped well below the form that saw him win the Italian Open last year at the Marco Simone Golf Club, the venue for this September’s Ryder Cup.
It has long been MacIntyre’s principal target to make Luke Donald’s European side for the biennial contest, and he hopes the move will inspire a change in performance ahead of this week’s BMW International Open in Munich.
“You make decisions based on facts and personal reasons, if I was being honest,” MacIntyre explained.
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“I’ve not been enjoying my golf. Everyone has probably seen that. I’ve been hard on myself. I’ve not been the Bob of 2019, 2020 and the early part of ‘21.
“I’ve gone away from who I was and I felt when I was at home, because I wasn’t enjoying it as much on the road, I wasn’t practising as hard.
“Obviously I did great with Shanksy, winning in Italy, but the main reason I am changing coach is the fact I’m closer to home with Davy, I can see him more. It’s just simple, really, and it’s the same with Mike in making a change of caddie. Greg’s more my age and I’m just trying to find the love for what I am doing. Trying to have a laugh and not let golf get in the way of that.”
Burns and Milne are both working alongside MacIntyre in Munich, before he heads to compete in the British Masters at The Belfry, Made in Himmerland event in Denmark, the Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club and The Open at Hoylake.
He currently sits 18th and 17th on the European and World points list respectively in Ryder Cup qualification but knows a blitz of strong finishes could still force his way into captain Donald’s plans.
“It just takes a potentially two or three-week stretch at the right time to make that team,” he added. “But, as I’ve said since the start, I am not really worrying about it. If it doesn’t happen, I’ll be disappointed. But I’m only 26.
“There’s so much good in my game just now and I’ve just got to fine tune little bits.
“This is the first week of five and it might not happen this week but it’s about trying to play this week as if we are preparing for next week then play next week as if we are preparing for the following week and then when we get to the Scottish Open and The Open, it’s just a case of letting it go and try and let the floodgates open.
“It’s just trying to get away from thinking ‘I should be winning this and winning this’. It’s about trying to prepare for something and just let it happen.”
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