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McGinley fears Ryder ructions

Ryder Cup vice-captain Paul McGinley fears the harmony and friendship that's long been a hallmark of the European Tour could be jeopardised should Colin Montgomerie's captain's picks be three of the four US Tour Europeans.

With just four days until Monty names his full 12-man side, the Celtic Manor team leader is under enormous pressure to select the best three players he believes will help win back the Ryder Cup.

However, the Scot has come under fire from the likes of Sweden's Peter Hanson and Italy's Edoardo Molinari to remain true to his word and choose three players who've shown loyalty to the European Tour.

If so, that would mean not selecting the 'FedEx Four' -- Ireland's Padraig Harrington and the English trio of Paul Casey, Luke Donald and Justin Rose -- who have shown little loyalty to Europe this year.

The four could have tried to secure automatic selection by contesting this week's Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, but instead seem more concerned with the cash on offer in the FedEx Cup opener in New Jersey.

Aside from his role as a Ryder Cup vice-captain, McGinley's also a member of the Tournament Players Committee, so he's used to hearing the complaints of the rank-and-file players.

But McGinley, after some time on the Gleneagles practice range, remarked on the undercurrent of opinion with regards to the European team picks.

"You only have to stand on that range for half-an-hour and you get an ear-bashing for sure," he said.

"Colin is going to pick three strong players no matter what and yes, there are going to be players disappointed, but what can he do," said McGinley.

"But no matter what three he picks, it is not going to weaken our European team. We are going to have a hell of a strong team."

And with two Irish-born players already in the European line-up, in Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell, plus McGinley and Clarke as vice- captains, McGinley admitted he cannot be seen to play favourites and push for Harrington as a pick.

"We have to act in the best interests of Monty picking the best 12 players to win the Ryder Cup back," he said.

McGinley is returning to competition for the first time since finishing tied 35th earlier this month in the Irish Open.

Joining McGinley in Scotland are five other Irishmen -- Shane Lowry, Damien McGrane, Peter Lawrie, Gary Murphy and Simon Thornton.

Tiger Woods tries to turn his mind back to golf again today after admitting that playing while going through a divorce was "a lot more difficult than I was letting on".

The world number one, whose marriage to Swede Elin Nordegren ended on Monday nine months after the world started to learn about his serial adultery, is in New Jersey for the opening event of the FedEx Cup play-off series.

"It's a sad time in our lives," he said. "We're looking forward in our lives and how we can help our kids the best way we possibly can. That's the most important thing."

The first big story of the tournament came before it started, with "third seed" Jim Furyk being disqualified for oversleeping and missing his tee-off time -- not in the event proper, but the curtain-raising pro-am.