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Every week a cup final for Lawrie

This September's Ryder Cup at Gleneagles has been billed as one of those once-in-a-generation events.

Paul Lawrie has struggled to earn Ryder Cup points.
Paul Lawrie has struggled to earn Ryder Cup points.

You could say it's a bit like Aberdeen fitba' club reaching a cup final these days. Not in front of Paul Lawrie, mind you.

In the 14 years since the Pittodrie team last trotted out for a showpiece occasion, Scottish golf's very own dandy Don has won five times on the European Tour. Aberdeen's trophy cabinet, meanwhile, has remained as dusty and barren as Old Mother Hubbard's pantry.

They will get the chance to stock up next month, of course, when they take on Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the League Cup final. Lawrie, a loyal fan through thick, thin and thinner, would love to be there but, in a Ryder Cup year, he has his own goals to shoot for. The Hassan Trophy in Morocco is his next scheduled event. It finishes on the day of the cup final and therein lies the quandary.

"It's quite a difficult one," confessed Lawrie, who could always nip back from Agadir if he misses the halfway cut. "It's obviously not great to be pulling out of a golf tournament in a Ryder Cup year because your football team are in a cup final . . . but we've not been in many cup finals. I'm not sure, but I think I will probably go to Morocco. If you want to get in that team then you need to play golf and not go to cup finals. If I don't play Morocco then it would be nine or ten weeks at home, which is no good for me when I'm trying to get going again."

Lawrie is, indeed, desperate to get going. The 45-year-old, without a top-10 finish on the tour since January 2013, is currently down in 65th place on the European qualifying points list. This time two years ago, the former Open champion won the Qatar Masters and rode the crest of a wave all the way to Chicago as he made a triumphant return to the Ryder Cup arena for the first time since 1999.

Given the sizeable catch-up job he is now playing, and the fact that he doesn't have the points-scoring benefits of a place in the top 50 of the world rankings, Lawrie concedes that his best bet of making Paul McGinley's side in Perthshire would be through the offer of a wild card from the skipper.

As a veteran of two Ryder Cup campaigns, Lawrie knows all about the cut and thrust of the transatlantic tussle and the eight-time tour champion has plenty to offer. He has already stated his case personally to McGinley; now he needs to let his clubs do the talking.

"At the moment, you can't see I'll earn enough or play well enough to get there automatically but who knows what's coming up," Lawrie admitted. "My goal is to make sure Paul [McGinley] has a bit of headache with me. I want him to see me as a valuable pick. I need to get my game going well before the Open to show him that I'm worth a pick.

"I had breakfast with him in Abu Dhabi. He was honest. He said he thought I would have earned more points at this stage. That's true. I thought I would have been better myself. But, like he said, there's still time for me to get going and earn points. I said to him 'I want to give you a headache when the time comes to make picks. I want to make the team, I want to play for you'. If I can win one big event in the summer and he's got three picks? I've got to be worth an outside shout of it."

He may sacrifice Aberdeen's cup final but every golfing event from now on is going to feel like one for Lawrie.

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