James tips Woosnam for Ryder captaincy

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The Independent Online

Mark James, the former Ryder Cup captain, has backed Ian Woosnam ahead of Nick Faldo to lead Europe at the K Club in Ireland next year.

Mark James, the former Ryder Cup captain, has backed Ian Woosnam ahead of Nick Faldo to lead Europe at the K Club in Ireland next year.

Woosnam and Faldo are the leading contenders for the coveted post, with Sandy Lyle also in the running after Bernhard Langer ruled himself out of a second stint in charge. Ryder Cup officials will make their decision next month and James believes personality is key to building on the success of last year's triumph.

James, captain at Brookline in 1999, claims Faldo would be better suited to take on the job in America in 2008.

"I think Woosie is the best candidate for the next Ryder Cup and probably Nick for 2008," James said. "I think we need a more emotive person to connect with the home crowd. That is more of an asset at home and I think someone with a more detached, clinical mindset is better over there."

James is unlikely to attempt to qualify for this year's Open at St Andrews despite his current Champions Tour form. James won the ACE Group Classic at the weekend, but said: "I don't know if I'll try to qualify, there's too much going on at seniors level. Qualifying is hard at the moment as it clashes with other things."

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