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Friday, 19 March 2010
Open de Espana - Previews  (Getty Images)
Open de Espana - Previews (Getty Images)

Colin Montgomerie has recovered from injury and is looking forward to competing with John Daly at the Open de España at PGA Golf Catalunya this week.

Europe’s The Ryder Cup Captain for 2010 will tee off in Girona, Spain, despite a hand injury which the Scot picked up at the Volvo China Open.

The injury has already forced the 45 year old to miss the Ballantine’s Championship but Montgomerie says he is raring to go at the tournament he won 15 years ago.

"My hand was injected again with cortisone, on the third day of the Volvo China Open I thought ‘Do I play Korea or go home’? The doctor gave me another injection, the anti-inflammatories were not enough,” said Montgomerie.

“I practised a lot and feel well today. It has been more difficult to plan the schedule this year, I am playing six weeks in a row which is a lot at this stage.

“I used to play 12 or 13 in a row many years ago, very busy six weeks until Wales.”

And Montgomerie provided a warm welcome for American Daly, who will be competing on The European Tour for the next month.

"It's great that the European Tour have accepted him with open arms," said The Ryder Cup Captain.

"I think it's right and as a charismatic character he can only add to The European Tour.

"There are only a few players in the world of sport who have had his raw talent. He is right up there."

One player who will definitely be absent this week is Montgomerie’s former The Ryder Cup teammate David Howell.

The Englishman, who was due to partner John Daly on the American's return to golf, has pulled out because of a side strain.

The Swindon golfer had travelled to Girona, but withdrew before teeing off in the pro-am.

"I'm terribly fed up," said Howell. "I did it lifting something awkward at home ten days ago and this week is just too soon for it.”

Daly’s return has already made a colourful start - he could be seen for miles in the pro-am because of an orange shirt and a pair of outrageous trousers even Ian Poulter might think twice about wearing.

The former The Open Champion winner, very serious about what he hopes to achieve in his comeback, warned: "It gets brighter than these, but I like that stuff - and nobody else has thrown things my way."

The 42 year old has not won for five years and he has had only one top-20 finish in almost two years, but he stated: "Hopefully I can win again. That would be the greatest thing - it does not matter where or when.”

Daly is nearly four stone lighter than last time he played following lap-band stomach surgery in February, and the American plans to compete on The European Tour for the next month.

"I wanted to lose the weight to get better at golf. You get to the point when nothing goes right and you almost give up on yourself, but I love the game, I want to keep playing and no matter what it takes I will do that.

"I'm rusty. You can practise all day long, but competition is totally different,” he said.

"I'll be nervous, but you're always nervous. If the butterflies are not there you don't have the desire any more - and I love the game so much."

 

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