Tom Watson set to captain United States' Ryder Cup team in 2014 - Golf - Sport - The Independent

Tom Watson set to captain United States' Ryder Cup team in 2014

 

Tom Watson is set to be unveiled tomorrow as the surprise choice to captain the United States for the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.

Watson was skipper the last time the Americans won the trophy in Europe but has not been to a Ryder Cup match since that triumph at The Belfry back in 1993.

After seeing their squad throw away a 10-6 lead under Davis Love III at this year’s Cup at Medinah, the PGA of America have placed their faith in Watson to inspire the States to their first victory since 2008.

The 63-year-old eight-time Major champion will be the oldest US captain, surpassing Sam Snead, who was 57 when he led the 1969 side to a draw at Royal Birkdale.

Watson (right) will be the first repeat captain since Jack Nicklaus, who beat the Europeans in 1983 but lost to Tony Jacklin’s men four years later.

Golf Digest reported on its website last night that the PGA of America had chosen Watson but a spokesman for the organisation would only say:  “We look forward to sharing the news of the 2014 Ryder Cup captain on Thursday.”

The captain will be officially unveiled during a segment on the Today show on NBC, which broadcasts the Ryder Cup in America. That will be followed by a press conference in New York’s Empire State Building.

Watson said at the weekend it would be a “great honour if I got tapped on the shoulder,” but added he had not spoken to the PGA.

Watson has not played a full US PGA Tour schedule in 14 years, although he is still capable of showing the young kids a thing or two as one of the cleanest ball‑strikers in history. It was only three years ago that Watson stood eight feet away from capturing The Open at Turnberry at age 59.

It will be interesting to see what the reaction is to Watson’s appointment.

David Toms, who spoke to the selection  committee during the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island in August, Jeff Sluman, Scott Verplank and three-time Presidents Cup captain Fred Couples had all been mentioned as contenders for the job.

There was also support for 65‑year‑old Larry Nelson. The three‑time Major champion has a
9-3-1 Ryder Cup record and won all five of his matches in 1979, beating Seve Ballesteros in four of them.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent