Team Europe eases Ryder Cup tension with laughs thanks to video

Tommy Fleetwood (Getty Images)
Tommy Fleetwood (Getty Images)

Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines - European golfers broke the tension of Ryder Cup week with a comedy video that left none of captain Thomas Bjorn's 12-man squad unskewered and all of them laughing at themselves.

Irish comedian and impressionist Conor Moore imitated the European players in a 10-minute video shown on Monday night at a team meeting, players revealed on Tuesday.

"Thomas 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," said England's Tommy Fleetwood, one of five Cup newcomers on this year's team.

England's Ian Poulter, a captain's pick making his sixth Ryder Cup appearance, was still smiling about the impressions.

"Team Europe are great from a video perspective and a perspective of team bonding," Poulter said.

"So 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.

"It was hilarious. You know, just clips like that, which kind of help the team get together. Although we're taking the Mickey out of one another, it's quite a good way to start the week off."

It's a helpful icebreaker between serious moments such as when Fleetwood saw the Ryder Cup uniform he dreamed of wearing for so long.

"Walking into your room, and you've got all your clothes, your outfits that are lined up, and getting in the team room with all the guys, it's really cool," he said.

"And without a doubt, this morning, putting this on, it's the proudest moment of my career. It's very special."

Fleetwood built camaraderie with his new team-mates, even if it meant taking a few pokes for his long hair, and he got to enjoy the dead-on impression of deadpan Francesco Molinari, the reigning British Open champion from Italy.

"I got away lightly, really. I've just got hair to talk about," Fleetwood said.

"Fran's was just hilarious. I think Fran's has made me giggle for about 10 hours now. Yeah, it was great. (Moore) was really good.

"Just how deadpan he was and 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."

Fifth-ranked Molinari, usually stoic, was laughing as he recalled the video imitation while at an actual news conference.

"I'm actually thinking of it all the time now answering questions, trying to smile a bit more," Molinari said.

Later he added dryly, "Can't you tell the difference?"

Bjorn said the jests were taken in the proper spirit, including some aimed at 2016 Olympic champion Justin Rose.

"I'm not sure Justin will be showing his gold medal too much the next few days," Bjorn said.

"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."

"When you get into what's a week of high pressure, you've also got to have a bit of fun. I very much always start in a place with stuff like that.

"If you're going to make fun of people, you've got to start making fun of yourself as well, so that's kind of where we went with it. That set a nice tone. It was a good atmosphere in that room."

The Dane got his own taste of being imitated as well.

"I was definitely in that video," Bjorn said.

"It included something like a shower cap made up for my head and then some extremely big eyebrows.

"They take the Mickey out of me, anyway. They don't need a video to do that."

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England 204 & 15/0 (10 ov)
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