Published: Fri, January 11, 2019
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Padraig Harrington expected to be named Europe's Ryder Cup Captain

Padraig Harrington expected to be named Europe's Ryder Cup Captain

New European Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington says Rory McIlroy should be judged by his actions, not his words, following his recent negative comments about the European Tour.

Europe has won nine of the last 12 Ryder Cups.

Harrington, who has won three majors and played in six successive Ryder Cups from 1999 to 2010, was a vice-captain when Europe took back the cup under Thomas Bjorn at Paris's Le Golf National past year.

The three-time major victor succeeds Dane Thomas Bjorn and becomes just the second golfer from the Republic of Ireland to take the reins for the tournament after Paul McGinley, who was victorious in 2014.

"There seems to be a natural progression at the moment", Harrington said of the European Ryder Cup selection process for Captains.

Having said that, I doubt if we'll see the course set up in the same way as it would be for a major.

He added: 'It's something I did think long and hard about. "It's not something I went into lightly".

"I really want to be a help".

"It's not something I take on without a certain amount of trepidation", Harrington, a three-time major champion, said when he was presented as captain at a media conference at the European Tour's headquarters at Wentworth.

Harrington has been a vice-captain in each of the last three editions after making six appearances as a player, four of which resulted in victories for Europe, and he has been charged with the responsibility of retaining the trophy in Wisconsin. Harrington, whose experience of the Ryder Cup is vast, must make sure he is just as thorough in determining who is worthy of a pick.

"As a player you're very one dimensional about doing your thing and as a vice captain you do a lot more".

Harrington, who hoisted the trophy four times during an illustrious playing career, can only dream his men will unleash such heroics on the greens and fairways in America when he leads them into the fray.

However, Bookmakers have been quick to make US favourites - although they are yet to confirm their skipper with the likes of Steve Stricker and Fred Couples in contention.

"I know we are going to a new venue, it's an away match".

"So yes, I think Steve will be a nice Ryder Cup captain.

I want to be a winning captain".

As a player, Harrington made his Ryder Cup debut at the Country Club in Brookline in 1999 and was ever-present for the following five editions, helping Europe to victory in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010.

"It's something that you'd better embrace because you know it will have that asterisk (next to your name) if you don't win it".

Asked if he would be willing to do something similar, Harrington replied with a smile: "You know, we're all about continuity on the European Tour".

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