Ryder Cup: Paul McGinley pleased to see potential wildcard Lee Westwood back in form
Last Updated: 05/08/14 11:13am
European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley was full of praise for Lee Westwood after the Englishman carded a flawless 63 in the final round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational on Sunday.
Westwood, who entered the tournament in 16th place in the European standings, is likely to need a wildcard pick from the Irishman in order to be a part of the European team’s defence of their title at Gleneagles in Scotland.
The world No 34’s return to form came as a welcome boost after four consecutive missed cuts - his worst run in almost eight years.
McGinley spoke glowingly of the contribution the 41-year-old has made to the European team since he first made his debut in 1997 but said he will have to continue to play well in order to earn a selection.
"If you look at the one pillar that has been consistent throughout the Ryder Cup success we have had since the 90s it has been Lee Westwood but you want to see Lee in form," McGinley said on Sky Sports 4.
"He is not going to get in on his reputation alone. He needs some form, he knows that and it's good to see him playing well today."
Westwood has represented the European team on eight consecutive occasions, earning 21 points from 37 matches and he was part of the team’s memorable success at Medinah in 2012, defeating Matt Kuchar to earn a crucial point in the final day’s singles.
McGinley’s predecessor Jose Maria Olazabal was afforded just two wildcard selections in 2012 but that number was changed to three in May 2013 at the Irishman’s request.
Four players qualify from the European Points list comprises points gained by players from all Race to Dubai tournaments and these places are held by Rory McIlroy, Victor Dubuisson, Jamie Donaldson and Henrik Stenson.
Five players qualify from the World Points list, which comprises official world golf ranking points and these spots are currently occupied by Sergio Garcia, Justin Rose, Martin Kaymer, Thomas Bjorn and Luke Donald.
USA captain Tom Watson will also have three wildcard selections, after he reduced his number of picks from four to three last year.