|Darren Clarke (zrim)|
DARREN CLARKE WILL BE THE NEXT European Ryder Cup captain. Clarke will lead the 12-man squad in the fall of 2016 at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.
The 2011 Open Champion becomes the first Northern Irishman to lead Europe against the United States, having played in the biennial contest five times, featuring on the winning side on four occasions. He was also a vice captain under Colin Montgomerie and José María Olazábal in the European wins in 2010 and 2012 respectively, and succeeds Irishman Paul McGinley, who captained Europe to a 16 ½-11 ½ triumph at Gleneagles last September.
Clarke takes the reins for the 41st Ryder Cup with the aim of leading Europe to a record fourth consecutive victory in the biennial contest.
The 46 year old was chosen by a five man selection panel consisting of those three most recent European Ryder Cup Captains - McGinley, Olazábal and Montgomerie – as well as the Chief Executive of The European Tour, George O’Grady, and European Tour Tournament Committee member David Howell, which met at Wentworth Club today (Wednesday February 18).
Clarke said: "I am naturally extremely proud to be selected as European Ryder Cup captain for 2016. The Ryder Cup has been a massive part of my life and my career, so to have the chance to lead Europe next year is a huge honour.
"I am lucky to have played and worked under some fantastic captains in my seven Ryder Cups to date, and I look forward to the challenge of trying to follow in their footsteps and help Europe to a fourth consecutive Ryder Cup victory at Hazeltine next year."