Chris Wood aims to end memorable season on a high at World Cup of Golf

23 November 2016 01:09

Chris Wood is confident his 'little and large' double act with Andy Sullivan can prove successful as they represent England at the ISPS Handa World Cup of Golf.

Wood was handed a late entry to this week's team event in Melbourne when Danny Willett withdrew due to a back injury.

Under competition rules Wood was allowed to choose his partner and he opted for his European Ryder Cup team-mate Sullivan.

At 6ft 6in, world number 37 Wood is eight inches taller than Sullivan and he acknowledges that will not go unnoticed.

Wood, who turns 29 on Saturday, told "We've got a height difference to overcome for the week, but it will be great. We both play the same ball so it will be pretty easy for us.

"We've both had pretty good years, both played Ryder Cup. So this is a great end to the season for both of us."

Wood's choice of Sullivan was controversial because Willett had already invited Lee Westwood to play as his partner. He explained his decision by saying he felt he would "gel a little better with Sully" but did suggest he might have to play well to get "a few people off my back".

On his arrival at the Kingston Heath course, he said the opportunity to play in the event was not one he was going to pass up.

He said: "I had a holiday planned with my wife, so I had to deal with that gently, but the chance to play in a World Cup - and the golf courses down here are so good - I'm always going to take it."

The World Cup of Golf is returning to the calendar for the first time in three years. The revised format will see 28 two-man teams compete over 72 holes of strokeplay. The first and third days of the tournament will be played in foursomes with fourballs on the second and fourth days.

Other notable teams include Rickie Fowler and Jimmy Walker (United States), Adam Scott and Marc Leishman (Australia), Thomas Pieters and Nicolas Colsaerts (Belgium), Alex Noren and David Lingmerth (Sweden) and Shane Lowry and Graeme McDowell (Ireland).

It is the 58th staging of the World Cup. Australia are the current holders but USA have the most wins with 24. This year's victorious Ryder Cup captain Davis Love was responsible for four of those American successes, in partnership with Fred Couples, and he has backed two of his Hazeltine team to do the job this time.

Walker said: "Davis sent both of us a text the other day - 'Go do what Freddie and I did back in the day, bring it home'.

"So that kind of resonated with me. I can remember watching when that happened. Four straight wins.

"That was cool, the captain wishing you luck. He knows two of his guys are going down here to play and have a chance to bring it home. I know both of us enjoyed that."

Source: PA