U.S. RYDER CUP CAPTAIN DAVIS LOVE III is playing good golf this summer. On Thursday Love fired a 2-under 68 in the opening round of the PGA Championship at the Atlanta Athletic Club, a round that included five birdies. Love won the 1997 PGA Championship at Winged Foot, his only major.
Love, who is currently 1 under on his second round, is grouped with Tiger Woods and Padraig Harrington. Both Woods (77) and Harrington (73) are struggling to regain the form that won them multiple major championships.
Meanwhile, Love is a motivated 47-year-old veteran. Yes, he is the Ryder Cup captain. But he also wants to be a Ryder Cup player.
“I made 12 (Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup) teams in a row,” Love said, “and I’ve been frustrated ever since. I want to make another Ryder Cup team.”
Love made his first Ryder Cup appearance in 1993 at The Belfry. That was the last win for the Americans until 1999. He played on that ‘99 squad, as well as the U.S. teams in 1995, 1997, 2002 and 2004. Last year Love was an assistant to U.S. Ryder Cup captain Corey Pavin at Celtic Manor.
Except for the Masters, it has been a solid year in the majors for the new American Ryder Cup skipper. Love finished in a tie for 11th at the U.S. Open and recorded a ninth-place finish at The Open Championship. He has made 10 cuts in 16 starts and is 86th in the FedEx Cup standings.
While Love is sharpening his game in the hopes of making his team, he will also be keeping a close eye on the other talent. He will have four captain’s picks to make next summer.
“What I’m going to be looking for are guys that are hot and that are putting good,” he said.
−The Armchair Golfer
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(Photo credit: Keith Allison, Flickr, Creative Commons license)