Ryder Cup greats given captaincy roles

Ian Woosnam and Nick Faldo, two of European golf's biggest stars, were named today as the next two Ryder Cup captains.

Ian Woosnam and Nick Faldo, two of European golf's biggest stars, were named today as the next two Ryder Cup captains.

Woosnam, who missed out to Bernhard Langer last time, will be in charge for the first–ever match on Irish soil at the K Club near Dublin in September next year.

Faldo, the most capped player in the history of the event, will then take over for the 2008 match at Valhalla in Louisville, Kentucky.

It is the first time two captains have been appointed at the same time.

The announcement was made this morning on Woosnam's 47th birthday and the Welshman said: "What a fantastic way to celebrate. My wife Glen (Glendryth) and I are absolutely delighted.

"The Ryder Cup has been a big part in our lives and it is a huge honour to be named captain. It makes me feel very proud, especially as Wales has such a great tradition of producing Ryder Cup captains."

Brian Huggett was the last in 1977 and Dai Rees had five matches in charge, including the 1957 victory.

Woosnam, vice–captain to Sam Torrance in 2002, has already ruled out being a playing captain, something opposite number Tom Lehman has refused to do.

"My decision is made now, even if I win two majors," he stated. "Being with Sam Torrance at The Belfry I saw how much he had to do and I can't see how you can possibly be in the team and captain."

The first of Woosnam's assistants will be named at the K Club during this season's Smurfit European Open and he stated: "It will be an Irishman." Des Smyth is the favourite.

Faldo has been in Puerto Rico this week but was contacted after the decision of the players' committee and said: "This is a proud day for both of us.

"It is a huge honour to be named captain of the team in 2008 and I can't say how excited I am at the prospect of leading the side in the United States.

"The Ryder Cup has always been extremely important to me and I will look forward to planning for that match. But for now it's Ian's time and I wish him the best for his captaincy."

Woosnam was asked if Faldo might be part of his backroom team but replied that he needed time to consider the situation. He added that he would be consulting with the six–time major winner whether it was in an official capacity or not.

The dual–captain vote was said to be unanimous among a committee which includes four of last year's record–breaking side – Colin Montgomerie, Paul McGinley, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Darren Clarke – plus Langer and two of his vice–captains Thomas Bjorn and Joakim Haeggman.

Chairman Jamie Spence commented: "We felt some obligation towards Nick to be honest and didn't think it was fair to make him hang on.

"We have two great champions and feel they are the right men for the job."

Woosnam acknowledged he has a tough act to follow. Langer led Europe to a 18.5–9.5 points victory.

"How can you beat that?" he asked. "All I can do is the best job I can. We'll see if they can match that, but I don't care if we halve the match or win by a point.

"Either of those and Europe would retain the trophy. I will not be trying to beat that record. I just want to win.

"The fear is the fear of losing. Bernhard Langer did such a fantastic job and I hate to lose."

Woosnam likes the fact that he has been preferred to Faldo for Ireland.

"I would have been very disappointed if I hadn't got the job. I'm a Celt and I love it in Ireland," he said.

"I feel I am very popular there and feel that will be to the benefit of the team. The crowds are going to be fantastic."

Faldo, who works as an analyst for American television company ABC now, will be 51 come the 2008 match and from July 2007 will be eligible for the US Seniors Tour.

But his early appointment means he can now plan how best to organise his various interests to give his all the Ryder Cup role.

Suggested Topics
News
newsGlobal index has ranked the quality of life for OAPs - but the UK didn't even make it into the top 10
News
people
News
people
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsA Welsh town has changed its name - and a prize if you can notice how
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
News
Destructive discourse: Jewish boys look at anti-Semitic graffiti sprayed on to the walls of the synagogue in March 2006, near Tel Aviv
peopleAt the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?