Davis Love III will lead America at the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National. The PGA of America confirmed his appointment as captain last night, a week after his name had been leaked on the Golf Channel.
The announcement brings to a conclusion an exhaustive inquiry into the recent failures of a United States team that has won only once this century.
Speaking at the PGA headquarters in Florida, Love said: “I have the same goal as I had in 2012 but not as the same captain. It’s a new team-building culture. We want to win. We have created a new process of continuity and teamwork which we hope will provide the platform for this and many more Ryder Cups. I couldn’t be more honoured.”
Love was perhaps a surprise choice given his surrender of a 10-6 overnight lead ahead of the final-day singles at Medinah in 2012. Europe’s comeback – they were 10-4 down at one point on Saturday afternoon – is the biggest by a visiting team, and equalled America’s turnaround on home soil at Brookline in 1999.
Love, a former PGA Championship winner, is an establishment figure respected by administrators as well as the players.
Had the ball not bounced his way on that fateful Sunday in Chicago, he might have been fêted as one of the game’s great leaders.
As it is he has all the motivation he needs to halt a European steamroller that has racked up a hat-trick of wins.
Tom Lehman was announced as a vice-captain. “It will be a thrill beyond all thrills and it’s an honour to serve alongside Davis,” he said. “This is a new era and I’m excited to be part of it. The task force created a process for guys to buy in and do whatever it takes to be successful.”
The match in Minnesota pitches Love against his old friend Darren Clarke, chosen to lead Europe last week.
He added: “We have been friends a long time. I’m looking forward to going up against him.”Reuse content