Tuesday 23 January 2018

Gallacher calls for double Irish to solve Ryder Cup dilemma

Liam Kelly

Liam Kelly

BERNARD GALLACHER, a three-time European Ryder Cup captain, is backing an Irish dual mandate for 2014 and 2016.

Gallacher has put forward a suggestion that the Tour's tournament committee, which meets on Tuesday in Abu Dhabi, should bite the bullet and name Paul McGinley for Gleneagles in two years time and Darren Clarke for 2016 in the USA.

"I would go for Paul at Gleneagles and Darren in America, where he is very well known," said Gallagher.

"I think a twin appointment would be perfect. There is a precedent and it is a good way out when two players are in the running.

"Paul is just that bit older. He has a good record as a captain in the Seve Trophy. He has played in three winning Ryder Cup teams and holed the winning putt in 2002. It seems a no-brainer to me."

The precedent cited by the Scot was the decision to name Ian Woosnam for the K Club in 2006 and Nick Faldo for Valahalla in 2008.

The announcement was made in early 2005.

Diplomatic and pragmatic as Gallacher is, he overlooks one key point: like it or not, ever since the Ryder Cup became a meaningful contest 30 years ago under Tony Jacklin's leadership, Ireland has shamefully been overlooked for captains.

Staging the event here six years ago was the ideal opportunity, but the best we got was Des Smyth as a vice-captain at the K Club.

McGinley and Clarke have served subsequently as vice-captains.

Irish Independent

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