Woods could sit out some Ryder Cup matches: Captain

Los Angeles: Corey Pavin knows Tiger Woods will want to play the maximum number of matches at the Ryder Cup, but the US captain will sit the superstar down if he thinks it`s in the best interest of the team.

Pavin, discussing his final preparations for the biennial match play showdown between the United States and Europe, Friday praised Woods` talent and team spirit.

"We`ve talked about how many times he wants to play," Pavin said. "He said, `I want to play five matches.` We talked about him not playing as many, and he said, `Whatever`s best for the team.`"

Pavin chose Woods 10 days ago with one of his four at large captain`s selections.

The world number one will once again be under intense scrutiny at the matches at Celtic Manor in Wales as he tries to put a positive finish on a year marred by personal scandal and poor golf.

Woods missed the 2008 Ryder Cup while recovering from knee surgery, and in fact his record in the competition is less than stellar.

But Pavin said there was no doubting Woods` commitment to the event.

"He`s more than ready," Pavin said. "When he`s there, he`s 100 percent there. Just because he doesn`t have a winning record in the Ryder Cup doesn`t mean he`s not fully committed to it."

Pavin said he has been studying possible pairings but is not yet ready to reveal any. He has a list of list of preferred partners from each of his players but said he hasn`t vowed to follow them.

"I didn`t see any surprises," Pavin said, noting every player suggested at least three potential partners. "There might be surprises in there for the fans, but I didn`t see anything out of the ordinary."

Pavin, who served as an assistant captain four years ago, is enjoying his shot at the helm.

He has sought advice from Doc Rivers of the NBA`s Boston Celtics, former Lakers executive Jerry West, some college coaches and some corporate executives about management and motivation.

He said one of his goals is to keep his players relaxed.

"Emotions run high during a Ryder Cup week for everybody, and you have to be very aware of your emotional level," Pavin said. "There`s a drain emotionally on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and you have to be ready to go Thursday."

The US team will depart for Europe on a charter flight after the US PGA tour`s Tour Championship in Atlanta September 23-26.

Bureau Report

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