Gavin Moynihan steps onto the first tee in Monza later today as the European Tour’s newest professional with Ryder Cup captains past and present praising the 20-year-old.
Moynihan received an invitation to contest the 72nd Italian Open on the Milano GC course alongside the famed Monza Autodrome which hosts the Italian F1 Grand Prix.
Five days ago Moynihan had helped steer Great Britain and Ireland to a record-setting Walker Cup success with Paul McGinley amongst those impressed by the young star.
“I enjoyed being around the GB & I team last week as there is an innocence and there’s a rawness about them but there was also a lot of ambition,” said McGinley.
“And that ambition extended well past last week’s Walker Cup as we see this week with Gavin playing his first pro event here in Italy.
“My advice to Gavin has been simple, and it’s just get better at what you do and keep improving your game. Don’t try to be something you’re not and don’t try to look for that extra 5% because in looking for that extra 5% you can lose 20%.”
Darren Clarke played a practice round on Tuesday in the company of Moynihan who has been a member of Clarke’s Foundation for the past few years.
“Gavin is a great young man and he’s got a very sensible head on his shoulders,” said European Ryder Cup captain Clarke.
“He’s coming off a great victory last week and knows exactly what he’s trying to do and with Chubby (Chandler) looking after him and directing him, he’ll be fine.
“But what any young kid like Gavin will find when they start out is that even if the pros are having a bad day, they can still make a score.”
Moynihan wound up his preparations playing nine holes yesterday in the company of Peter Lawrie and Damien McGrane.
Irish tee times
Darren Clarke 9.20am; Kevin Phelan 9.30am; Paul McGinley 9.50am; Damien McGrane 10.20am; Gavin Moynihan 1.40pm; Simon Thornton 2pm; Padraig Harrington 2.20pm; Peter Lawrie 3.20pm.
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