There’s no escaping the Ryder Cup. Well, there would be if us lot in the golf media wouldn’t keep banging on about it.

Not many showpiece occasions generate as much hooting hype and hollering hysteria as this biennial battle for that little gold chalice. Every single aspect of the transatlantic tussle is pored over with the kind of forensic attention to detail that Mary Berry used to adopt as she poked and prodded at the bottom of a Victoria Sponge during the judging process on the Great British Bake Off.

The captains will get quizzed on this, the vice-captains will get asked about that and potential players will be pressed for a bit of the other as all and sundry get squeezed for build-up material and wrung dry like a dish cloot being birled through a mangle.

In this increasingly fevered environment, Robert MacIntyre has the right idea. “I’m not worrying about it all,” said the Scot as he limbered up for the start of his defence of the DS Automobiles Italian Open title in Rome today.

The Marco Simone club, where this week’s latest DP World Tour event is taking place, is the venue that will host September’s Ryder Cup, too. MacIntyre, of course, would love to be back in officially branded European team colours later in the season. In the wake of his thrilling win last September, MacIntyre admitted that “my only goal for the season is to make the Ryder Cup team.”

A few months on, the Oban lefty still harbours that ambition but he won’t let the Ryder Cup mania consume him.

“I got dragged into all the Ryder Cup chat the last time and thought about it too much,” he said of his ultimately futile effort to qualify for the 2021 team for the match at Whistling Straits. “As a result, I went away from doing what I do best. This time, I’m not thinking about it all. This week won’t define my season. What will be, will be.

“There’s still so much golf to be played before all that. Good or bad we’ll keep marching on, keep working hard and hopefully we’ll be there in September.”

MacIntyre’s nerveless play-off victory over US Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick in last year’s Italian Open underlined his abundant talents and earned him the second DP World Tour title of his young career. But this is the first time I’ve defended a title because the event I won in Cyprus before that didn’t happen again,” added the former Walker Cup player of his 2020 victory in an event that withered on the vine.

This week’s outing will be MacIntyre’s 100th tour event and he has arrived in Rome in decent fettle. He has reeled off three successive top-seven finishes and knows that he is not far away from knocking off another victory. In this game of fine margins, you never know when it will all click.

“My game has been good for the last three weeks,” he said of his form. “In fact, I’ve been playing well for about a year now. I’ve just not got across the line. If I play like I have been, though, I’ll be there or thereabouts.”

“Last year the rough here was absolutely brutal and it’s no different this year. It is a little bit tighter on some holes, but there are opportunities and guys are going to go low at certain times. You’ve just got to hang in there and come Sunday just take your chances.”

Coming back to a golf course where you have prospered before always stirs the senses and rouses the morale. In last year’s Italian Open, MacIntyre went on the kind of charging offensive that could’ve been made on horseback as he fired a closing 64 to set the clubhouse target. Rory McIlroy couldn’t catch him but Fitzpatrick forced the play-off with a birdie on the last hole. It was the young Scotsman, however, who completed the Italian job in the sudden-death shoot-out.

The memory of the slaying of a major champion will serve MacIntyre well but he’s not one to wallow in its warming glow.

“Obviously, I have great memories of this place and that’s good for confidence,” he said. “But I’m not one to look back. I’m only 26, there’s hopefully so much more to come.”