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Westwood says fans ‘essential’ to Ryder Cup

England’s Lee Westwood, in line to play in his 11th Ryder Cup, says spectators are “essential” to the US-Europe golf showdown despite the possibility of empty stands due to Covid-19.

Westwood, a vice captain two years ago when Europe won the trophy in France, told The Golf Channel he cannot see staging the event without the emotional responses spectators bring to the rivalry.

“I just don’t see somebody holing the winning putt, from either side, on the 18th green or wherever it may be, turning to an empty stand, raising his hands in the air and it feeling the same,” Westwood said in a Wednesday posting on the network website.

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