Ryder Cup hopeful Clarke to play in Madrid Masters

MUNICH -- Darren Clarke's name has been
added to the European Tour's entry list for the Madrid Masters
tournament from Sept. 14-17, the week before the Ryder Cup match
between Europe and the United States.

After telling Europe's Ryder Cup captain Ian Woosnam he
would like to be considered for one of his two wild cards, the
Northern Irishman can now give himself at least one week's
tournament practice if he is selected on Sunday in Munich.

Clarke, whose wife Heather died on Aug. 13 after a long
battle with cancer, has not played tournament golf since missing
the cut in the British Open on July 21, but is being tipped
strongly as one of Woosnam's choices.

A spokesman for Clarke's management company, International
Sports Management, said: "He feels if he is picked, he needs a
competitive week.

"But even if he is not chosen, it will be his only chance
for tournament practice before he plays in the Amex (WGC
American Express Championship from Sept. 28-Oct. 1)."

Even with little match practice, Clarke could be a
considerable force for Europe.

He has beaten world No. 1 Tiger Woods to win the WGC
Accenture Matchplay Championship in the past and has a fine
track record at the Ryder Cup venue, the K Club in Ireland,
where he won the 2001 European Open and has had a European Tour
record round of 60.