Rory's centre stage
FedEx blow won't affect Rory says McIlroy
Last Updated: September 24, 2012 3:39pm
Rory McIlroy will be the star attraction at the Ryder Cup in Medinah, according to Peter Oosterhuis.
"He is taking over from Tiger. Whether Tiger can play as well as he had done over the years, I doubt it. But Rory is the star."
Peter Oosterhuis Quotes of the week
The Northern Irishman missed out on claiming the Tour Championship on Sunday as he slipped to a 10th-place finish in the final FedEx Cup play-off at East Lake, where American Brandt Snedeker claimed the victory, title and $10million prize money.
But Oosterhuis, who made six Ryder Cup appearances for Europe between 1971 and 1981, believes that result will not knock the 23-year-old's confidence ahead of the Ryder Cup, which begins at the Medinah Country Club on Friday.
And Oosterhuis insists the world number one, who claimed his second major by winning the USPGA Championship by eight shots at Kiawah Island in August, has taken over from Tiger Woods as the best player on the planet and the star of the show.
"I don't think it knocks his confidence at all," Oosterhuis told Sky Sports News.
"It is a 10th place, sometimes people are proud to have a 10th-place finish. Of course his standards are extraordinarily high. He can shake that off.
"He knows everybody is behind him and he knows he has enormous talent. Maybe he will think, 'hey I won the PGA Championship by eight shots; I beat all the best players in the world'. So a 10th place finish is not going to affect him at all.
"He has shown that he is quite something. He is taking over from Tiger. Whether Tiger can play as well as he has done over the years, I doubt it. But Rory is the star."
Justin Rose and Luke Donald - both of whom will be central to Europe's hopes in Chicago - finished second and third in the final FedEx play-off but Oosterhuis played down the significance of those performances.
"I don't know that they needed those finishes," he said. "Those players have experience in the Ryder Cup and they have trust in their game under pressure. It was nice to have a high finish and make a bunch of money but they were ready even before that."
And asked who would win in Medinah, Oosterhuis said: "Europe, cruise home by one point, maybe. I think it is going to be a very close match and Europe will scrape home."