Martin Laird open to Ryder Cup pursuit after Las Vegas victory

Martin Laird hasn’t ruled out trying to qualify for Europe’s Ryder Cup team after ending a seven-year winless run at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.

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The Scot defeated Matthew Wolff and Austin Cook in a play-off at TPC Summerlin to register his fourth PGA Tour title, 11 years on from claiming his breakthrough victory at the same event.

Laird – who isn’t currently a member of the European Tour – was under consideration for a wildcard pick for both the 2012 and 2014 contests, with the American-based golfer still open to the idea of one day representing Team Europe in the biennial event.

“Obviously it’s something that, if it’s an opportunity, I would absolutely die to play in,” Laird told Sky Sports News. “People think that because I’ve lived in America for a while that I don’t care, but I’m still 100 per cent Scottish and want to play for Europe in the Ryder Cup.

“To be honest, I’ve not been playing well enough the last five, six, seven years that I don’t even know what the criteria is anymore to get in! I know they’ve changed it and I know you used to have to hold a card, but I don’t know whether they would give me more lenience.

“One win isn’t going to get me in! I’ve got to keep working on what I’m doing, focusing on my goals and then if I keep getting better and can get in the mix again and pull off another win, or at least be a little more consistent, then we’ll worry about that down the road. I’ve had a couple of questions about the Ryder Cup since I won, but I’m just enjoying this right now.

“Once all this calms down, then I’ll sit down with my team and work out what I would need to do and what has to happen. I don’t want to say either way right now because I don’t even know what it would take, but once I’ve stopped celebrating this one then we’ll have a look into it.”

Laird’s victory his first PGA Tour win since the 2013 Valero Texas Open and lifts him back inside the world’s top 100, with the win seeing him jump to fourth in the early FedExCup standings.

“I think the biggest luxury is that I can sit and choose my schedule now and know I’m in tournaments like the Masters and The Players,” Laird added. “To know that I don’t have to worry is the best thing.

“I’m also in some of the Invitationals and some of the tournaments that I love out here on the PGA Tour that maybe I was going to struggle to get in, being in the category I was in coming off an injury last year.

“I have goals but they’re not tournament specific, they’re performance goals that I know if I meet then those other things will happen. I’ve got a great team and we’ve got some good goals that I know if I get within my little window on all those things we chose, then I’m going to be just fine.”

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