"You still want the same treatment?!" Ryder Cup vice on LIV's Garcia and Poulter

Nicolas Colsaerts believes the spirit of the Ryder Cup is suffering as he offered his thoughts on LIV Golf players Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia. 

"You still want the same treatment?!" Ryder Cup vice on LIV's Garcia and Poulter
"You still want the same treatment?!" Ryder Cup vice on LIV's Garcia and…

Nicolas Colsaerts says it "doesn't sit well" former Ryder Cup stars Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia received preferential treatment for years but still expect the same after joining the LIV Golf League as he opened up on the rare kidney disease that almost took his life. 

In an interview with Tom Kershaw of The Times of London, the 40-year-old Belgian has spoken about a number of topics. 

Chief of which was the horror of waking up to seeing his ankles double in size whilst in Dubai playing on the DP World Tour a little over a year ago. 

Colsaerts revealed he feared the worst and felt angry, questioning: "Why me? I always considered myself to be a pretty good person." 

He said he struggled to record a voice note to tell Thomas Bjorn that he was rushed to hospital as he held back tears. 

Related: Shane Lowry calls on Europe's young guns

Doctors later confirmed that Colsaerts was suffering from blood clots as a result of primary membranous nephropathy, which is a kidney-specific autoimmune disease. 

He also claimed that it is "the spirit" of the Ryder Cup that is suffering as a result of the bitterness that has emanated from the emergence of LIV Golf. 

Fast-forward to the present day and he has now received the all-clear. 

In October, Colsaerts was named one of Luke Donald's three vice-captains alongside Bjorn and Edoardo Molinari for the dust-up in Rome later this year. 

Related: Tiger has two conditions if he wants to play in Rome

Colsaerts has seen first hand how ugly things appear to have been behind the scenes with regards to the DP World Tour family after the emergence of the breakaway tour. 

Poulter, Lee Westwood and Europe's record points scorer Garcia have become estranged from Ryder Cup Europe. 

Poulter made the headlines last week after he lashed out at the DP World Tour over a perceived birthday sleight

Rory McIlroy has taken centre stage and previously claimed he has felt a sense of "betrayal". 

Reigning U.S. Open champion Matthew Fitzpatrick joked he would happily room with Garcia in September. 

Next month a five-day hearing will take place place in London to determine whether the European-based circuit has the legal power to ban players from the DP World Tour. 

Colsaerts told Kershaw:

"There's a part of me that wants the 12 best Europeans to represent Europe just because of the history. It's a huge loss for the quality of the event. I don't know what decision is going to be taken but, regardless of what side of the fence you're on, the biggest loser is the spirit of the Ryder Cup. It's a bit of a stain, let's say."

Asked about Garcia and Poulter's behaviour, he added: 

"They had preferential treatment for however many years and now someone else comes knocking and you go over there but still want the same treatment here. That doesn't sit well with me. 
"It's always difficult to hear somebody criticising something you have a strong affectionate relationship with. In my case, [the criticism] just hurts. Loads of people are still happy to see them play and people will pay to watch them, but you can feel the atmosphere is different unfortunately and it's really sad."

The 2023 Ryder Cup will be played at the Marco Simone Golf & Country Club in Rome. 

It will be the 44th match between Europe and the U.S. 

Colsaerts comments come as it appears PGA Catalunya has emerged as a favourite to host the 2031 Ryder Cup. 

Next page: Nine players who changed their mind about LIV Golf

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