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Poulter: I will make the Ryder Cup - if I'm fit

Alex Perry at Wentworth
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Ian Poulter has endured a difficult 2014 so far, with a T5 at the China Open his only top-20 finish © Getty Images
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Ian Poulter has vowed to turn around his season and make the Ryder Cup team, starting at this week's BMW PGA Championship - provided he is fit to play.

Poulter, who top-scored for Jose Maria Olazabal's European team at the so-called Miracle at Medinah two years ago, has been struggling with a back problem.

But despite poor form adding to his injury woes, Poulter admits he will be "more than ready" for the biennial slobberknocker between Europe and the US.

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Rory McIlroy announced his split from Caroline Wozniacki on Wednesday © Getty Images
  • Two years ago, Rory McIlroy said he had taken his "eye off the ball" following a missed cut at the BMW PGA Championship.
  • This time he has dropped a huge bombshell on the eve of the European Tour's flagship event by announcing he has split from former tennis world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki.
  • The timing could not have been worse, writes ESPN's Alex Perry.
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"There are three majors and a World Golf Championship before the Ryder Cup," he said. "So a lot of ranking points to play for before the Ryder Cup.

"There's four months to go - and with Akron, the US PGA and a push for the FedEx Cup - I'll be more than ready.

"Form-wise it's been a very frustrating six months and a really difficult start to the year. I picked up a slight niggle in January - a tiny tear in my left shoulder - and had a virus before the Players Championship which hampered me. I didn't want to make a big deal of it and as much as it got me down, I've got to stay positive and keep going."

Poulter's latest problem concerns the L4, L5 and quadratus lumborum muscles in his lower back that left him feeling like "someone was jabbing me in the back with a knife every time I hit a ball".

And he admitted it could keep him out of the European Tour's flagship event this week.

He added: "This morning [Wednesday], I'd have said I have a 10% chance of playing. But I've just hit some balls and I would say it's now more like 70%.

"Tomorrow [Thursday] the percentage will be even higher which is really good news. It's not the best prep I could have had for this week."

The ardent Arsenal fan added: "I haven't flown recently because I came over early for the FA Cup final, so I came down here early to get some extra work done on a course at which I haven't performed well in the past.

"I will wake up on Thursday and do some fitness work with my physio, but chances are I will be teeing off.

"I'd like to play. I'm here, it's Wentworth, and it's a big tournament. I think it's important for the European Tour that I try and play but I have to be mindful that I don't injure myself further. That has to take priority when thinking about teeing off."

Alex Perry is an assistant editor at ESPN.co.uk. You can follow him on Twitter at @AlexPerryESPN

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