Montgomerie shows Ryder form - Golf - Sport - The Independent

Montgomerie shows Ryder form

With the possible exception of the 20,000 cardiologists who are descending on the city for a conference this weekend, few conversations are being conducted here that do not involve the latest theories as to who is in Bernhard Langer's mind for his two Ryder Cup wild-card selections.

With the possible exception of the 20,000 cardiologists who are descending on the city for a conference this weekend, few conversations are being conducted here that do not involve the latest theories as to who is in Bernhard Langer's mind for his two Ryder Cup wild-card selections.

About the only two people to avoid the subject yesterday were two of the most prominent candidates, Colin Montgomerie and Luke Donald, who just happened to be playing together in the first round of the BMW International at Nord-Eichenried.

"Very briefly, at the beginning, before we even teed off," Donald replied when asked if any Ryder Cup talk had taken place. "He just said: 'Do you think we are OK?' I didn't know at first what he was going on about, but I said: 'I hope so'."

Montgomerie's version of the conversation suggested the young Englishman had got the wrong end of the stick. "I meant whether it was going to rain or not," the Scot insisted. "I would never, ever say something like that on the first tee. I'm far too professional."

It was a delicious exchange at a time when everyone's words are analysed for double and triple-speak. Whatever the truth of the matter, Donald went out and scored a 68 while Montgomerie had a 67.

Retief Goosen, playing for the first time in a month due to a pelvis injury, led the way with a 66. The South African is rarely distracted at the best of times and does not have to concern himself with the closing dramas of Ryder Cup qualifying.

Paul McGinley, in 10th place on the standings, kept his form going with a 70 but the two men above him who are also yet to secure their places, David Howell and Ian Poulter, both had 73s. Alex Cejka, another in contention for a wild card, started well with a 68.

Nord-Eichenried is known as a low-scoring venue but with the rough up, and wind and rain around, conditions were difficult.

It was a round of old for Montgomerie as he did not drop a stroke, one of only two players to keep a bogey, or worse, off his card.

On the second half of his round, from the first to the ninth, Monty took only 12 putts. The score was made when he hit a wedge to four feet at the fifth, a three-wood on to the green at the next to set up an eagle, and two three-irons and a wedge into the par-five ninth for another birdie. Donald, who has a wonderful tempo and balance in his swing, appeared to have hit his driving iron sweetly at the sixth but just came up short in the pond. It turned a possible birdie into a bogey-six.

Why John Daly, who also scored a 67, has never appeared in the Ryder Cup is a mystery only a half-a-dozen American captains can answer. He certainly did not lobby Hal Sutton. "I don't kiss anybody's ass to get something," he said. "I appreciate the fans and the media talking me up but I think it pissed Hal off."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future