It has been a season that has been heavily disrupted by injury for David Howell, but the 31 year-old Englishman from Swindon is confident that his latest aches and pains will not hinder him as he attempts to play a full part in Europe’s defence of the Ryder Cup in Ireland next week.

Howell (pictured) was preparing to face Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie in the first round of tomorrow’s HSBC World Matchplay Championship at Wentworth when he revealed that he feels far from 100% fit at present. He was part of the six-strong team of European players that went on a reconnaissance mission to the K Club last week and he admitted that playing there may have been a mistake.

“I woke up on Tuesday of last week and my neck and back were in tatters to be honest,” he said.

“I probably shouldn’t have played those practice rounds at the K Club and was a bit frustrated. I had a couple of sessions with my physio and it started to ease off a bit but I still withdrew from my pro-am on Friday. That wasn’t great, but I’m feeling much better now. It seems like I need a week to get my body up and running at the moment. Hopefully I’ll be in good shape for this weekend’s HSBC World Matchplay and I’m positive I’ll be ok for the Ryder Cup and won’t need resting.”

Howell is hopeful of emulating Montgomerie this week at Wentworth. The Scot managed to secure the BMW Championship and World Matchplay Championship in 1999, and after Howell won the BMW Championship at Wentworth by five shots in May he is in with a chance of a famous double.

“Obviously the BMW Championship is the biggest win of my career so far,” Howell said.

“But the World Matchplay has got a fantastic tradition. If you look at the roll call of winners over the years there’s some very big names. Certainly having David Howell on the bottom of them would be very special.”