Thomas Pieters made European Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke’s job more difficult on Sunday, winning the European Tour’s Made in Denmark tournament in the final event of qualifying.
Pieters won by a shot at 17 under par, making birdie on the final three holes at Himmerland Golf & Spa Resort to win over Bradley Dredge. In his last three events, the long-hitting Belgian has won in Denmark, finished in second last week in the Czech Republic and finished in fourth in the men’s Olympic golf competition. If Clarke is looking for a hot hand to help round out his 12-player team, Pieters could well be a perfect fit.
However, Pieters is one of four players seriously challenging for one of the three-wild card picks.
There’s Russell Knox, who has won twice on the PGA Tour this season, including the week after the PGA Championship at the Travelers Championship. He also has two runner-up finishes this season.
Martin Kaymer is a contender, having committed to the European Tour this season because he didn’t make enough PGA Tour starts last year to maintain his card. He’s been brilliant dating back to April, with six top-seven finishes on the European Tour. However, he’s gone without a win.
The other player worth noting is Lee Westwood, who has five top-11 finishes on the European Tour, including that runner-up effort at the Masters in April. He’s been a part of every European Ryder Cup team dating back to 1997, carrying a 20-15-6 record. His experience would be helpful on a team filled with rookies.
Though this was the final week for earning qualifying points, nine players had already sewn up their automatic qualifying spot as of last Sunday in Prague. The nine players already on the European team are Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia, Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Chris Wood, Danny Willett, Matt Fitzpatrick and Andy Sullivan.
The Ryder Cup starts Sept. 30 and runs through Oct. 2 at Hazeltine National in Chaska, Minn.
source : http://sports.yahoo.com/news/thomas-pieters-wins-in-denmark-complications-ryder-cup-picks-situation-194118801.html