Furyk downplays Ryder Cup pairings talk, says Tuesday is about individuals

Team USA captain Jim Furyk said the week's opening practice round is solely about the individuals on his team and their respective games.

Published : Sep 25, 2018 21:01 IST

Team USA captain Jim Furyk and Tiger Woods.
Team USA captain Jim Furyk and Tiger Woods.

Team USA captain Jim Furyk and Tiger Woods.

Jim Furyk says Team USA's practice groupings offer no insight into how he will line his team up for the opening day of Ryder Cup action on Friday.

Furyk sent Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Reed out first on Tuesday to get to know Le Golf National.

World number one Dustin Johnson led the second group that included Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Justin Thomas, while Bubba Watson, Tony Finau, Brooks Koepka and Webb Simpson compiled the final quartet.

Some suggested Furyk's choices offered insight into how he could set up his side for the foursomes and fourballs, but the captain was quick to dismiss those claims.

"Today is really about trying to learn the golf course and hit some solid golf shots," Furyk told a media conference.

"I just want them concentrating on their own game right now. 

"They are very aware of who they will be playing with this week and they are very aware of some of the options they have, and they will work on that a lot in the team room and they will work on that a lot in the next couple [of] days."

Furyk said pairings could be found in those groupings, but more importantly, each group featured a golfer with some experience on the French course.

"I really was trying to mix the guys in there," he added. "And today is a lot about working in their own game, right. I mean, we're coming right off a flight. 

"I know how I would feel on those first three holes. My swing would feel kind of loose, the club would feel light in my hands, and throughout the day I'd be working on hitting the ball solid."

After winning his first PGA Tour title in over five years at the Tour Championship on Sunday, Woods joined up with his team-mates in France, but rather than showing signs of fatigue the 42-year-old was raring to go.

"You know, being the consummate professional, no one is going to out-prepare Tiger Woods, I'll say that," said Furyk.

"I think he looked very focused on kind of learning the golf course. His game has obviously been very sharp here in the last couple of months. You know, getting over the jet lag, getting out there and hitting some solid golf shots, and he gave me a couple [of] things he thought about the golf course there.

"We tried to give these players expectations. You go out on the golf course, here is what I see about it, here is how I would describe it and here is the shots I think are important that you need to play out there. He let me know what he was expecting and a couple [of] little differences."

And Furyk did not seem terribly concerned by the decisions he will have to make in the coming days as Friday's matches creep closer.

"I’ve got a really good idea of what I'd like to do for day one," he said. "Maybe not quite as exact on day two, but have some options to branch off and work some different pairings."

Pairings for Friday morning will be announced at Thursday's opening ceremony.

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