Harrington happy to sidestep Wentworth

By Brian Keogh

Padraig Harrington has defended his decision to skip the European Tour's flagship BWM PGA Championship next month.

With one eye on his preparation for June's US Open, the Dubliner decided last week to drop out of the Wentworth event from May 22-25 and play the following week's Wales Open at Celtic Manor instead.

Padraig Harrington

He said: "It takes me a full week to get rid of my technical thoughts and another week to get into focus, I want to be there when it starts the third week.

"Basically I swapped. I could have gone to the States and played The Memorial at Muirfield Village. But with one eye on the Ryder Cup I will play an Europe.

"It's not the PGA but the following week. That was my intention and while it is not good for the PGA it is good for the Welsh Open."

The Dubliner has never been a fan of Wentworth's greens but he denies that he was worried about jinxing his putting stroke three weeks before the US Open at Torrey Pines.

After putting poorly for the first 27 holes at the Masters, he said: "I play 30 events a year and in three or four of them my alignment will go out and my reading will be a little off.

"I haven’t got the ability to perfect or select exactly what weeks those will be but I know I play my best golf after three weeks and I putted well probably for two and a half rounds at the Masters."

Harrington has two weeks off before he travels to the US for the Players Championship at Sawgrass, followed by his Irish Open defence at Adare Manor.

Skipping Wentworth, he then plays the Wales Open and St Jude Championship.