Wednesday 23 October 2019

Padraig Harrington chooses to reduce captain's picks from four to three for 2020 European Ryder Cup team

Padraig Harrington. Photo: PA
Padraig Harrington. Photo: PA

Phil Casey

European captain Padraig Harrington has opted for three wild cards instead of four for next year's Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits.

Nine players will qualify automatically for the team via points earned in tournaments starting with the 2019 BMW PGA Championship and ending at the same event in September 2020.

Harrington will then select three wild cards to complete the team which will defend the trophy won in comprehensive fashion in Paris last year.

The three-time major winner said: "I have said on many occasions that one of the reasons for recent European success in the Ryder Cup is continuity. It is a theme that will be prevalent across my captaincy and I think you can see that in the overall qualification process for the 2020 team.

"Having said that, I am pleased that the (European Tour) tournament committee agreed to the change of wild card numbers.

"I have spoken to a number of people regarding the ninth player automatically qualifying for the team and, in my experience, a player is more comfortable when he has qualified, hence my reasoning behind this change.

"I am also delighted to be starting and ending the process at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth. It is one of our most prestigious events, played at an iconic venue and the home of the European Tour itself and will help give a real narrative to the qualification race."

Points will be multiplied by 1.5 towards the end of the qualifying period, but none will be available from tournaments played opposite the European Tour's Rolex Series events.

The 43rd Ryder Cup will be played on the Straits Course at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin from September 25-27, 2020.

PA Media

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