Tommy Fleetwood isn’t mourning the break-up of “Moliwood” and is ready for the reception from the American fans in this week’s Ryder Cup.
The Lancastrian had a dream debut for Europe in Paris, partnered with his best friend in golf Francesco Molinari to four wins in foursomes and fourballs.
But while the Italian hasn’t made the team for Whistling Straits, Fleetwood thinks there’s plenty of potential match-ups for Padraig Harrington.
‘I would love to be that for someone else’
“I was very lucky last time to have that kind of partnership in my first Ryder Cup,” he said. “But I’m a bit more experienced this time.
“It will be different to see how the pairings go. I really do get on great with all the guys and would like to think people would be all right partnering up with me.
“It’s not just Fran in the world that would want to partner me! He was the most comfortable person I could be out with.
“So I would love to be that for somebody else, for somebody to feel comfortable and thrive and play their best golf with me.”
‘You have to kind of enjoy it in a way’
A homefield advantage three years in the making?
Why the weather matters, and what fans can expect from Whistling Straits with just days until tee off in Wisconsin ⬇
— Ryder Cup USA (@RyderCupUSA) September 14, 2021
It was an ecstatic Paris crowd three years ago, and Whistling Straits will be a new experience, but Fleetwood isn’t scared of a bit of name-calling.
“You always get heckled a bit at times, but I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “It’s going to be another challenge, another experience.
“Guys like Paul Casey, Lee (Westwood), Poults, all come up with the same thing, that you have to embrace it. You have to kind of enjoy it in a way because that’s the only way you’re going to thrive in that atmosphere.
“There’s a lot worse at the football eery week, probably. You just have to take it in its context. Ours is a sport you’re just not used to getting that from crowds.
“But I think it’s another great thing about the Ryder Cup, home and away. Any time it comes along it’s always great for golf. Everyone wants to tune in and the fans are a massive part of that.”
‘You become a family’
What insulates the players is not taking it personally, and realising their team mates have their back.
“There will be no hard feelings for whatever anybody comes out with,” added Fleetwood. “The great thing is you go back with your 11 team-mates, your captain, vice-captains and backroom staff.
You all become a family when you’re there. You go into battle together and I’m really excited about doing it with this group of lads.”