There will be a special cheer for Paul McGinley today when he returns to the scene of his finest hour and tees up once again at The Belfry.

It will be six years next week since McGinley holed the winning putt to halve his match with Jim Furyk and win the Ryder Cup for Europe.

He has since been part of two more winning teams, at Oakland Hills and The K Club, so boasts the fabulous Ryder Cup record of played three, won three.

But, when McGinleylooks back on his career - and, at only 40 years old, he hopes there are many more miles on the clock yet - the moment with which he will most be associated will be that special scene on the 18th green of the Brabazon course.

Although McGinley has twice been back to compete at The Belfry, he cannot help visiting the place without thinking about that September Sunday six years ago.

"It's a great thrill just to drive through the gates here," said McGinley, who tees off today at 8am in the company of Ian Poulter and Oliver Wilson. "There's no question it still gives me a buzz thinking about it.

"I've been involved with two other winning Ryder Cup teams, but that one was massive, coming after Brookline and so against the odds.

"At Oakland Hills, we had 12 guys all on form and Bernhard Langer was dealt a great hand. "Obviously, winning in Ireland at the K Club was something I will always treasure but [team captain] Sam Torrance had to duck and dive a hell of a lot more that week six years ago, and the memory of The Belfry will live with me forever."

Only one other man, Torrance, can know what it meant, 18 years on from the day when the Scotsman holed a similar sized putt to earn Europe their first win at the The Belfry. McGinley is fully aware of the rarity of the moment.

"To not only have the opportunity, but to actually hole the putt that won the Ryder Cup, was the cherry on the cake," he said.

The Irishman certainly has moved on since and hs best campaign to date came just two years ago. He finished runner-up three times in 2005 before concluding a wonderful year with victory in the season-closing Volvo Masters at Valderrama, a performance that did most to get him back on the Ryder Cup team at The K Club.

Now another Ryder Cup qualification year has commenced, McGinley sees this week's return to The Belfry as a means of kick-starting a season which, so far, has been faltering.

He has only missed four cuts in 18 events but, equally, he has only made the top 20 three times. His most memorable performance, at the Open Championship in July, was still a comparative disappointment after he led the field by two shots at the end of the first round. But this week brings him back to Britain and to a course he loves.

"The atmosphere at The Belfry is always fantastic and the course a challenge," he said. "I have to see it as a good chance to improve on my current position and rise in the rankings."

He will also hope for a happier week than he enjoyed on his last visit to the Warwickshire course in the Quinn Direct British Masters, 16 months ago.

The keen West Ham United fan spent the first two days that week fretting about whether he and Darren Clarke, a big Liverpool fan, were going to make it to the Millennium Stadium in time for the FA Cup final on the Saturday afternoon.

The Saturday schedule had been brought forward to ensure a lunchtime finish, encour-aging McGinley and Clarke to hire a helicopter to get them to Cardiff.

But, in McGinley's case, all the fuss, bother and cost was unnecessary as he missed the cut on the Friday night and Steven Gerrard's late goal ruined his day in Cardiff.