DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Matt Fitzpatrick returns to the scene of the largest European Tour win of his younger profession, however he’s not simply excited about defending the $eight million DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.
His thoughts can also be on subsequent yr’s Ryder Cup.
Fitzpatrick birdied his 72nd gap 12 months in the past to edge out fellow Englishman Tyrrell Hatton. The $1.four million test for his third European Tour victory stays the largest of his profession. He gained the Omega European Masters this yr for his fourth win in three seasons as a professional.
No surprise he’s wanting past this week’s match to subsequent season. Excessive on his precedence checklist is taking part in an enormous half in Thomas Bjorn’s Ryder Cup workforce to tackle america at Le Golf Nationwide in Paris subsequent September.
“My aim is to make Thomas’ Ryder Cup workforce, that’s my major goal of the yr,” Fitzpatrick mentioned.
The 23-year-old made his Ryder Cup debut at Hazeltine final yr. It wasn’t the debut he’d dreamt about as a younger boy rising up in Sheffield, England. The 2013 U.S Beginner champion solely made two appearances in Europe’s dropping effort. He and Henrik Stenson misplaced in foursomes to Brandt Snedeker and Brooks Koepka, three and a couple of. He then misplaced to Zach Johnson in singles, four and three.
Fitzpatrick gained’t be a rookie subsequent yr, which implies he’ll in all probability be greater than prepared if he must ship a significant singles level on the ultimate day.
“I really feel such as you’ve acquired to play your personal ball earlier than you play on Sunday,” Fitzpatrick mentioned. “I performed one foursomes recreation final yr, and also you’re hitting half the photographs. It didn’t really feel such as you’re hitting any photographs in any respect. So there’s by no means any momentum to your recreation. You flip up on Sunday and also you type of nearly don’t actually know what’s happening in a method.
“I don’t assume I performed sufficient final yr to actually have it make an affect on me personally. I’d love the possibility clearly to make the workforce and play once more subsequent yr.”
Fitzpatrick is fourth on the Ryder Cup European factors checklist. A repeat win this week will go an extended technique to serving to him get his want of taking part in in subsequent yr’s match.