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Published: 08:35 | 22/8/16

Five rookies for European Ryder Cup team


The European Ryder Cup team will contain at least five rookies after the nine automatic qualifiers were confirmed.

Although qualifying runs to next week's Made In Denmark, Thomas Pieters and Shane Lowry can no longer overtake those ahead of them in the points.

Pieters needed to defend his Czech Masters title and Lowry required a top four finish in the Wyndham Championship but neither were able to achieve their goals - Pieters lost out by a shot with Lowry finishing in a tie for 42nd in the US.

Rory McIlroy, Danny Willett, Henrik Stenson, Chris Wood, Sergio Garcia, Justin Rose, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Andy Sullivan and Matt Fitzpatrick have qualified automatically for the competition at Hazeltine with Willett, Wood, Cabrera-Bello, Sullivan and Fitzpatrick set to make their debuts in the biennial event.

"It's very exciting now. We can look forward to it and get my game in shape," Fitzpatrick said in Prague.

"I've probably been in the team for the longest period of time. It (the qualifying period) started a few weeks before I won at the British Masters and jumped into the team and I've managed to stay there since then. It's been absolutely phenomenal and I'm just delighted to be in the team.

"It's a great opportunity, I've got my first one coming up and hopefully I can just keep pushing on my game and getting better."

Captain Darren Clarke will name his three wild cards on August 30 with Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer, Lowry, Pieters and Russell Knox set to battle it out for a place on the team.

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