Padraig Harrington very honest about biggest Ryder Cup captaincy risk
"I'm the right man for the job, at this time."
Padraig Harrington has been confirmed as the Team Europe Ryder Cup captain.
Harrington will lead the reigning champions into the 2020 tournament in the USA.
The three-time Major winner was announced as the successor to Danish golfer Thomas Bjorn, who led Europe to a resounding win over a highly fancied USA team at Le Golf National last autumn. Harrington was vice-captain for that event.
At the event to unveil him as captain, Harrington said:
"I'm thrilled to be named as the Ryder Cup captain for 2020. It's not something I went into lightly... I want to leave the Ryder Cup and Europe in a better place in two years' time... Ideally we'd play the same 12 again but it's a different competition, it is two years down the line and it's an away match... I'm really conscious that I have to find that edge and add to it."
Harrington added 'we know a successful captain is great and, if they lose, it's his fault". He admitted that he did ponder whether it was worth waiting for the tournament to return to Europe in 2022 to take up the role before realising this was the best chance for this current European group to make a mark away from home.
The USA have only won three Ryder Cups since 1993 and all have been on home soil. They have won two of the last three in the United States (Kentucky and Minnesota).
The Dubliner has a decent playing record in his early days in the competition and was regarded as a fierce competitor in the singles section. Overall, though, his points haul from 25 appearances was 10.5 points.
He appeared in six consecutive Ryder Cups, from 1999 to 2010 and finished on the winning side four times. He has been vice-captain on three separate occasions.
Padraig Harrington follows Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley as Irish captains of the storied team, which evolved to Team Europe from a Great Britain & Irish selection.