Padraig Harrington has officially been announced as Europe’s captain for the 2020 Ryder Cup which will be held in Whistling Straits, Wisconsin.
The three-time major winner was the clear favourite to take over from Thomas Bjorn and lead Europe into enemy territory as they attempt to defend the title they won in Paris last year.
The Dubliner has appeared at the famous tournament nine times in total. Six of his nine appearances came as a player where Harrington won the Ryder Cup on four occasions. He was on the winning team in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010.
His other appearances came at the last three tournaments when he served as a European vice-captain under Bjorn, Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley, each of whom was on the committee tasked with selected the team’s captain.
The 47-year-old Irishman also has good experience of the course in Wisconsin having played there in the US PGA Championships of 2004, 2010 and 2015.
Harrington was made the betting favourite for the job after Lee Westwood indicated he would rather take up the role in 2022 when Europe are at home.
Speaking at his unveiling at the European Tour’s headquarters in Wentworth Harrington was delighted to be named as captain for the 43rd instalment of the Ryder Cup, but stressed it is something he won’t be taking lightly.
“I’m thrilled to be named as Ryder Cup captain for 2020, it’s not something I went into lightly,” he said to reporters after his nomination.”
“You could look at this as being a natural progression from player to vice-captain to captain but it’s not something I take on without a certain amount of trepidation,” he added.
Harrington, who is not able to play at the moment having broken his wrist falling down the stairs at Christmas, acknowledged the size of the task he faced in winning at Whistling Straits.
“I know we are going to a new venue, it’s an away match … I have to be part of that team and ensure that I find an edge to make the team perform to the best of their abilities and hopefully get a win,” he said.
“I want to hopefully leave the European Tour and Ryder Cup in a better place after two years.”