Incheon - Captain Nick Price paid tribute
on Tuesday to Anirban Lahiri - the first Indian to play in the Presidents Cup
and the joker in the pack of his International team.
"He brings a great sense of humour to
the team," Price told a news conference at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in
Incheon, venue for the 11th Presidents Cup which is being hosted for the first
time in Asia and begins on Thursday.
"A lot of guys didn't realise how
funny he is but he has a really good sense of humour and he's just so keen to
get out there and play," said Price, saying the world number 39 had
already established himself as a firm team-room favourite.
"We're very happy he's on the
But Price said that there was more to the
man who has won twice on the European Tour this year and finished fifth in the
US PGA Championship than just being game for a laugh.
"We met in Fiji last year, and I went
up to him, because he had been progressing up the rankings," said Price,
adding he was immediately impressed by Lahiri's determination and hunger to
make the team.
"He expressed to me he really wanted
to play on the Presidents Cup, and that made me feel very proud.
"You want guys out here who are
wanting to play. So he's really looked forward to that.
"I've seen him a little bit over the
years, but I think it's a huge bonus... for us to have an Indian for the first
time on our team.
"We know how big golf has become in
India, and all of us hope that maybe one day The Presidents Cup will go to
Price said his players had been gelling
well and he had a strategy for Thursday's opening foursomes, but he wouldn't reveal
any pairings yet.
"Take away the golf, take away
everything else; do they get on as two individuals," said Price when asked
how he would go about his selections.
"And the second thing is, you look at
how their games match up together... are they better at foursomes or would they
be better at best-ball? So there's a lot of strategy involved."
Price's hands may be partially tied as he
thinks about which two players to leave out of the opening five foursomes
pairings, as 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel has not been well since
arriving in Incheon on Monday morning.
"Everyone is keyed up, the team is
ready to play," said Price. "Apart from Charl (Schwartzel) who had a
little bit of a bug. He had a vitamin B12 shot this morning the doctor gave
him, so hopefully he'll be OK. Other than that, everyone is raring to go."