Europe’s Ryder Cup preparations have got off to an upbeat start at Le Golf National after the team was treated to a video from Irish impressionist Conor Moore.
The European bid to regain the cup from the United States gets underway on Friday morning as the biennial event takes place in France for the first time near Paris.
The 12-man team assembled over the course of the day on Monday and Europe captain Thomas Bjorn gathered his players together for the first time on Monday night, treating them to a 10-minute video from the Mullingar comedian, renowned for his golf impressions and sketches.
Moore is understood to have taken off every team member as well as the captain and the video proved a hit with the players, judging by the four Europeans who faced the media before practice on Tuesday morning.
“We had a great video clip last night, which was done by Conor, and he kind of took everyone off in the team, and it was extremely funny, I have to say,” Ian Poulter said. “I'm not sure you guys are going to get to see it, but I can tell you it was probably 10 minutes long, and it was hilarious.
Ryder Cup rookie Tommy Fleetwood was particularly taken with Moore’s impression of Open champion Francesco Molinari.
“The impressions, yeah. I got away lightly, really,” the Englishman said. “I've just got (long) hair to talk about.
“I mean, Fran's was just hilarious. I think Fran's has made me giggle for about 10 hours now. Yeah, it was great. He was really good.
“Thomas (Bjorn) made it out how it was a serious video, and then we had this press conference of Conor doing all these impressions. It was a nice little laugh for 10 minutes.
Of the Molinari impression, Fleetwood added: “Just how deadpan he was, just trying to make how excited he was with his deadpan tone. It was perfect, really. It was absolutely spot on. Fran's was definitely my favourite.”
Bjorn said he thought it was an ideal way to kickstart the week.
“That was a team effort, let's put it that way,” the captain said. “But obviously we have a wonderful social media team on The European Tour that comes up with great ideas.
“That set a nice tone. It was a good atmosphere in that room yesterday. I think that there might be one or two that found out a few truths about themselves about how people look at them, but they took that all in great spirits.
“I'm not sure Justin will be showing his Gold Medal too much the next few days,” Bjorn joked.
As for Moore’s impression of the skipper, Bjorn added: “I was definitely in that video. It included something like a shower cap made up for my head I think, and then some extremely big eyebrows.
“Yeah, I was very much included. I don't know if I was the most fun one, but certainly, well, they take the mickey out of me, anyway. They don't need a video to do that.”