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The Ryder Cup is fast approaching and plenty of European stars are reaching the last chance saloon.

Team Europe captain Luke Donald has a strong core group of players set to tee it up in Rome – but the Englishman’s final few wildcard picks are anyone’s guess.

Viktor Hovland has joined Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm as the third automatic qualifier for Donald’s team and the trio, who each occupy places in the top five of the world rankings, must deliver in Rome.

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But who will join Europe’s big-hitters at the Marco Simone Golf Club next month?

Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Fitzpatrick, Shane Lowry and Justin Rose also look primed for the battle, leaving four spots in Donald’s team that are still very much up for grabs.

The three leading players on the European Points List secure their places, while the next automatic spots are reserved for the top three on the World Points List who haven’t already qualified.

McIlroy and Rahm have long since snapped up the first two automatic spots in the European Points List and the final position is currently held by Robert MacIntyre.

MacIntyre, who would become only the second left-handed European to tee it up in the Ryder Cup, holds a narrow advantage over the German Yannik Paul after his superb runner-up finish at the Scottish Open.

The European-based players have three more tournaments to impress, starting with the ISPS Handa World Invitational in Northern Ireland as the DP World Tour returns this week.

MacIntyre heads the field and will be desperate to shine, before making his final case in the Czech Masters and the Omega European Masters.

Poland’s Adrian Meronk is in fifth place and remains a contender for both an automatic slot and a wildcard after his Italian Open victory at Marco Simone back in May.

Meanwhile, Victor Perez and Adrian Otaegui are further down the list and will join MacIntyre in the field in Northern Ireland.

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As it stands, Fleetwood and Hatton will qualify via the World Points List as they gear up for the final two FedEx Cup playoff events of the season on the PGA Tour.

Fellow Englishman Rose and Austrian Sepp Straka are also in the final 50 in the FedEx Cup standings and have the chance to shine at the BMW Championship and then the season-closing Tour Championship.

Here are the European Ryder Cup rankings as it stands…

European points list

1. Rory McIlroy (Q)
2. Jon Rahm (Q)
3. Robert MacIntyre

4. Yannik Paul
5. Adrian Meronk
6. Tommy Fleetwood
7. Victor Perez
8. Ramsus Hojgaard
9. Adrian Otaegui
10. Shane Lowry

World points list

1. Rory McIlroy (Q)
2. Jon Rahm (Q)
3. Viktor Hovland (Q)

4. Tyrrell Hatton
5. Tommy Fleetwood
6. Matt Fitzpatrick
7. Sepp Straka
8. Shane Lowry
9. Justin Rose
10. Robert MacIntyre

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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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