While he has typically thrived on the Ryder Cup atmosphere, Ian Poulter believes the event should be played even without fans.

Coronavirus: Poulter would relish behind-closed-doors Ryder Cup


Ian Poulter is adamant the Ryder Cup should go ahead if possible, even if fans are unable to attend.

Like the majority of the sporting world, golf's calendar has been decimated by the COVID-19 crisis.

The Open has already been called off for 2020, while the Masters – which was scheduled for April – has been rearranged until November.

As things stand, the Ryder Cup is still due to go ahead at Whistling Straits in September, though several of golf's top names including Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm have stated their belief the biennial competition between the United States and Europe should not go ahead without spectators present.

However, Poulter, a five-time Ryder Cup victor, has a differing opinion.

"I'm not saying 'postpone it' if there's no fans," Poulter told Sky Sports.

"I want to make that team and if I do, and we have to play it behind closed doors, I'm going to embrace it 100 per cent.

"It will be good for TV. It won't be good from a players' standpoint, there won't be as much fun, because you won't be able to feed off the energy of the fans.

"We would love to see a Ryder Cup with fans. We feed as a team, and we always have, off the fans. So, if you take them away it's going to be an extremely different feeling.

"I'd love to see the world be in a better place by September, and for one of these amazing companies to find a vaccine which would turn this thing on its head very, very quickly. It's not looking likely, but miracles do happen."

Poulter does, though, think alterations will have to be made to the selection process, which as it stands for Europe sees nine players earn qualification from the world and European points list and the captain make three picks.

"There would have to be more picks. People haven't had the opportunity to play since February, and some guys might not have the opportunity to play much golf before August," he added.

"It's up to the European Tour and it's up to Paddy [captain Padraig Harrington] to decide what is the best way to be fair to everyone.

"There are going to be guys that have weathered this storm well and there'll probably be some guys who haven't weathered the storm well.

"A load of guys in the UK I know haven't been playing golf at all and they've just been practicing in a net in the back garden.

"It's not going to be easy to make that selection whether it's 12 picks, six picks, four picks, however they go about it."



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