John Hopkins reports that some tweaking is being considered for the 2010-and-beyond Ryder Cups.
When the Ryder Cup is staged in 2010 at Celtic Manor, near Newport in South Wales, it will be the first time that the event is held on this side of the Atlantic after the US tour beefs up its August and September schedule in 2007. Increasing the importance of events in those two months and offering a huge boost in prize-money means that the United States players, and any from Europe who are involved, will not be disposed to rush back to Europe to compete in a Ryder Cup at the traditional time of the third week in September.
The obvious solution is to move the event to October, but this brings the question of shortening daylight into question, so officials of the European Tour and the PGA in Britain, and the PGA of America, are considering starting on a Thursday instead of a Friday and increasing the numbers of players competing in the foursomes and four-ball matches from eight to ten. Two series of five foursomes matches would be held on Friday, with one series of five four-ball matches on Thursday and one on Saturday. The 12 singles matches would be played on Sunday.
Ah, so it can be more like the President's Cup.
“It is a situation we are looking at,” Sandy Jones, the chief executive of the PGA, said. “No decision has yet been taken and won’t be for some time, certainly not until later this year at the earliest.Ahh, because they aren't making enough now!
“Let’s get this year’s Ryder Cup in Ireland out of the way first. The next Ryder Cup meeting is scheduled for May during the BMW (Championship at Wentworth). It will not be discussed then.
“There are all sorts of issues to consider. There is the health and safety issue of bringing people in and taking them home in the dark, for example. The positives are that there would be more opportunities to sell tickets and more merchandise, though we are pretty well sold out for Thursday this year."
“The proper thing to consider is the playing of the matches. Some people say the three days is so intense they do not want a fourth day. Others say that adding an extra day would reduce the intensity. It might suit the players in that they are used to arriving late on a Tuesday evening or a Wednesday for an event that starts on a Thursday and ends on a Sunday.”