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Howell: Pick Gallacher

European tour golfer David Howell believes Europe's Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley should select Stephen Gallacher as one of his three wildcard picks for this year's showdown.

The 39-year-old finished one shot ahead of Gallacher to claim the runner-up spot in last weekend's Italian Open. Had Gallacher won that tournament he would have guaranteed an automatic spot in the team.

But Howell insists the rookie, who is in line to become the only Scotsman in the European team in this year's event at Gleneagles, has earnt his place with his performances this year.

"I've known Steven for 20 years and obviously my job was to play as well as I can for myself and my team of people," Howell told Sky Sports News HQ.

"Unfortunately it was just one shot shy for Stephen but it was a tremendous effort by him to hit 65 in the final round.

"To miss out after a year-long race by one shot on one week is an incredible stat but that's the way it played out in the end."

When asked if McGinley should select Gallacher, Howell replied: "I would yes – that pretty much sums up my opinion.

"I think Stephen is in good form and he's got great form around the centenary course at Gleneagles. I think he's finished in the top 10 seven times – he knows that course like the back of his hand.

"He's a long-hitter and Gleneagles is a pretty long course and at that time of year length is always an advantage.

"So for me Stephen deserves his place in the side."