Padraig Harrington was today named Captain of the European Ryder Cup team in 2020. The worst-kept secret in golf was finally made public by the PGA at a press conference outside London at lunchtime.
The Dubliner will be an appropriate leader of the European side at the Whistling Straits course in Wisconsin at the end of September 2020. On the shores of Lake Michigan, the golf course is modelled on an Irish links set-up and the resort’s founder, Herb Kohler, proudly flies the Tricolour alongside the Stars and Stripes there every day.
It was only a question of ‘when’ Harrington would captain Europe as his status as a three-time Major champion assured him of the nod at some point in his career.
It means Irishmen have now captained three out of four European teams following Paul McGinley in 2014 and Darren Clarke in 2016. Perhaps that remarkable run will finally erase the anger of some older folk in Irish golf who still feel aggrieved that the first man ever to play in ten Ryder Cups, Christy O’Connor Snr, was repeatedly snubbed for the captaincy in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s.