Special Envoy to Rome,
- The world ranking of the best golf players
The face of the friendly and charismatic Belgian lights up as soon as we talk about the Ryder Cup. "I have this competition in my skin," he said last week at the France Open. Not a little proud to have been elevated to the rank of vice-captain of the European team that challenges, from Friday the Marco Simone G&CC course, in Rome, Colsaerts sums up his role: "I am at the service of captain Luke Donald and I will put all my experience and knowledge to push Europe to victory. My mission in 2023 will be exactly the same as in 2012, which is to contribute to the team in any way possible." "The Belgian bomber" had been a hero of 2012, in Medinah, where the former world 32nd had offered himself in doubles, in the company of Lee Westwood, the scalp of a certain Tiger Woods.
A figure on the European circuit for twenty years, appreciated by all, the Brussels native had the ideal profile to join the staff and work in the shadows in order to follow the state of form of all the candidates. "I've been playing tournaments with them every week for six months. We got to know each other better with the younger generation. I try to tickle them a little bit with the experience I've had. That's the job, you're trying to build a relationship with these guys so that when Ryder Cup week comes, you just have to look at them to find out how they are and how to approach them. About the nugget Ludvig Aberg, the winner of the Open of France 2019 does not hide his admiration: "We have been following him for a long time. It is a surprise yes and no, even if we can be surprised by its rapid hatching. We knew its potential. When McIlroy, Rahm and Hovland are unanimous in saying he's a fighter, from there is no discussion about the level of play he can develop.
And the vice-captain is not worried about the uncertain state of form of a player like Robert MacIntyre, the only member of the European team present at Le Golf National last week that he finished above 110th place. "You shouldn't pay too much attention to this result. They're still world-class guys. Bob can very well land and make six birdies per round and bring back points. He's like me. He comes from team sports" (football). If he did not know exactly in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines what his role would be in Rome - "Francesco Molinari José Maria Olazabal and Thomas Bjorn by their experience will certainly be on the course as close as possible to the players" - he did not hide his impatience to live "this exciting experience from the inside". Recovering from a rare and serious kidney disease, contracted at the end of 2021, the 40-year-old dreams of experiencing in Rome the same emotions he had experienced as a player at Medinah. He firmly believes in another "miracle." "We have prepared the course to benefit our players. And the atmosphere within the team is great. There is a nice osmosis in the group. It can count even if the Americans have better rankings."