Three more of Europe’s 2018 Ryder Cup winning heroes have confirmed they will return to the BMW PGA Championship next month, with Paul Casey, Tyrrell Hatton and Ian Poulter all set to take part in the Wentworth showpiece event.
The trio all played an important role in Europe’s 17.5-10.5 victory at Le Golf National last year and will join their team-mates Tommy Fleetwood, Rory McIlroy, Francesco Molinari, Alex Noren, Jon Rahm, Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson on the West Course from September 19-22.
With this year’s BMW PGA Championship marking the beginning of the points race for the 2020 Ryder Cup European team, Casey, Hatton and Poulter will join a host of European stars targeting a strong start in their quest to qualify for Padraig Harrington’s team at Whistling Straits.
Casey has been on the winning team in three of his four Ryder Cup appearances and has lost only three of his 12 matches. He partnered debutant Hatton in Paris in the Friday and Saturday fourballs in Paris – beating Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler in the second of those.
Poulter’s Ryder Cup record needs no introduction – in six appearances the Englishman has established himself as a European legend, forming a central part of winning teams on five of those occasions and most notably at Medinah in 2012 when he spearheaded one of the most remarkable comebacks in modern sporting times.
Casey, Hatton and Poulter will bolster a field which is set to be one of the strongest in recent history, with ten of Europe’s 2018 Ryder Cup team joined by American stars Tony Finau, Billy Horschel and Patrick Reed.
“I am delighted to be returning to the BMW PGA Championship,” said Casey. “Obviously Wentworth is one of my favourite golf courses and I have such fantastic memories there. I think it will have really benefitted from the change of date this year and the conditions might be some of the best we will have ever seen on the West Course. I really enjoyed playing last year after a few years away and playing in front of your home fans is always incredibly enjoyable. As a Rolex Series event and now the start of the Ryder Cup points, this is one of the biggest weeks on the European Tour schedule, so hopefully I can bring my A-game.”
Hatton said: “I can’t wait to get back to Wentworth and back to competitive golf after a few weeks off. The BMW PGA Championship has always been one of the most important tournaments on the schedule for me, having regularly attended as a kid and dreamed of one day being part of it. Hopefully I’ll be feeling fresh next month and I can give the home fans something to cheer about.”
Poulter said: “I always get such incredible support when I return home to play on English soil, so I’m really looking forward to playing the BMW PGA Championship. The fact that it will be the first counting event for The 2020 Ryder Cup of course gives it some extra importance for me, as making it onto Padraig Harrington’s European team will once again be my biggest goal over the next 12 months. It’s shaping up to be a great week at Wentworth and hopefully I can play well and put myself into contention come Sunday.”