Paul Lawrie was hoping to be back fulfilling his vice-captain’s duties today after being put into quarantine in Europe’s team hotel when he was diagnosed with a virus.
“I felt unwell on Wednesday morning, went to the course but came straight back and slept all day,” said the Aberdonian from his room. “I saw a doctor in the afternoon and was told I had a virus so it was best to stay in my room for a couple of days away from the team.”
As well as preventing him in assisting Darren Clarke and the rest of the vice-captains in the team’s preparations, the untimely illness also forced Lawrie to miss out on the official dinner on Wednesday night.
He was hoping to have recovered sufficiently to attend yesterday afternoon’s opening ceremony before joining Sam Torrance, Ian Poulter, Thomas Bjorn and Padraig Harrington in being Clarke’s men on the ground over the next three days. “I’m totally gutted as I’m never ill,” added Lawrie of missing out on playing his part over the last two days as Europe bid for an unprecedented fourth win in a row.
For Torrance, it’s his 12th Ryder Cup as either a player, captain or vice-captain. “I’m here for my experience,” said the 63-year-old, smiling, before heaping praise on captain Clarke. “Darren doesn’t need much help, to be honest,” he added. “I remember his acceptance speech when he won the Open at Sandwich [in 2011] was just magnificent. I didn’t expect that.
“I did expect him to win the Open, but he was so… I don’t want to say eloquent but he remembered everyone, very unemotional and it was fantastic.
“If you can do that when you’ve won the Open, which I’ve never done, this’ll be like a piece of cake for him.”