Francesco Molinari: It will be amazing for Home Raiders to appear in Italy after winning the Champions Cup | Golf News

Francesco Molinari led Continental Europe to a 14.5-10.5 victory over Great Britain and Ireland in the inaugural Champions Cup at Abu Dhabi Golf Club; The tournament was preparation for the September Ryder Cup in Rome, which will be played live Sky Sports

Last update: 1/23/15 2:18 PM


Francesco Molinari celebrates after overseeing the European Champions Cup

Francesco Molinari dreams of appearing in the Ryder Cup in his home country after leading continental Europe to Champions Cup glory.

The 2018 Open Championship champion oversaw a 14.5-10.5 victory against Great Britain and Ireland as captain in the inaugural team event, introduced to give Team Europe prospects experience playing in team events before a biennial face-off with the team. United States of America.

Molinari, a member of the 2018 and 2021 European Teams, has his sights set on participating again in September, and this year’s tournament at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome is an extra incentive for the Italian.

“It’s clearly there,” said Molinari, who finished with a total of 3.5 out of 4 possible points from his foursomes, foursomes and singles matches. “It’s a great motivation for me.

“I need to be careful; it’s a long way and there’s a lot of golf to be played between that and a lot of goals, intermediate goals to get there.

“So, I just need to focus on my game – it’s definitely a lot better than it was. So I’m hoping to play some good golf and be in Rome.

“Being in Rome would be absolutely incredible.”

Paul McGinley believes that the psychology of being within a team in an individual sport is very important to the preparation of the Ryder Cup.

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Paul McGinley believes that the psychology of being within a team in an individual sport is very important to the preparation of the Ryder Cup.

Paul McGinley believes that the psychology of being within a team in an individual sport is very important to the preparation of the Ryder Cup.

Molinari’s 3-and-2 win over Shane Lowry got Sunday’s first point on the board for Europe as they started singles needing just 4.5 points to seal the win at Abu Dhabi Golf Club.

Great Britain and Ireland had some early success on the final day, with captain Tommy Fleetwood beating Thomas Peters 3 and 2 and Tyrell Hutton taking a huge win 5 and 4 over Antoine Rosner.

But any hopes of repairing continental Europe’s progress were dashed when results from elsewhere began to emerge.

Fleetwood was understandably disappointed with the result, but the Englishman was full of praise for the way his close friend Molinari and his team vindicated themselves and took so many positives out of the tournament.

Tommy Fleetwood got positives from the Champions Trophy despite Great Britain and Ireland suffering defeat

Tommy Fleetwood got positives from the Champions Trophy despite Great Britain and Ireland suffering defeat

“It was an amazing experience for me,” said Fleetwood. “I wish we could have made it happen but at the same time, you do, you remember these moments forever and cherish them.

Continental Europe played great all week, and even until the end I saw them ramming the important hits.

“Fran, I wasn’t on his side at all this week, I only played against him, but I know and trust Fran will do a great job.”

The win was eventually secured for Europe by Adrian Meronk, with pole on the 18th to finish 1up against Callum Shinkwin.

It was Mironc’s first point of the tournament and he was delighted to be able to make such an important contribution – something that will undoubtedly please his group of fans who have followed him throughout the tournament.

“I didn’t put in a lot of shots today, the whole tournament, so it was great to put that final round in the 18th,” Mironc said. “It was a perfect place with the team around me and special.

“Winning as a team is more fun, you have these guys supporting you and playing with them and playing as a team, I think it’s more fun and definitely more fun for me.

“Just focus on my game as our captain, Francesco, said today, just focus on your game and your point of view, and that’s exactly what I did.”

The Champions Donald Cup presentations give plenty to think about

European Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald has been watching the proceedings over the three days, as well as being on hand to advise both teams.

The presence in Abu Dhabi has given the 45-year-old some valuable insights he may not have had when it comes to selecting the captains of the six teams for this year’s Ryder Cup.

“We track a lot of stats and see which parts of the game are invaluable to winning, but you look at those important moments in games and how you react to that,” Donald said.

“It’s how they react to pressure and how they perform when it really matters – whether they win the game or not.

Luke Donald praised the Champion's Cup sessions as an experience

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Luke Donald hailed the Champion’s Cup sessions as an “invaluable” experience as he prepared for the Ryder Cup.

Luke Donald hailed the Champion’s Cup sessions as an “invaluable” experience as he prepared for the Ryder Cup.

“There are always important moments in matches, and being able to see them outside the ropes and how they react is really important to me.”

There is no doubt that Donald and his deputies have benefited from the experiences gained in the Champions Cup.

“If I had gone straight to Rome without having any experience, I think it would have been a much tougher task,” Donald said.

“Being in that environment and knowing where I might have made some mistakes and correcting them in the future, it’s been invaluable.”

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