Donald Again States European Ryder Cup Selection Door Still Open To Non-Resigning LIV Stars

Realistically, there may be only two players but Luke Donald says the selection door is still open for those European-born LIV golfers who have not resigned from the DP World Tour.

We learnt last week that as many five almost certain future European Ryder Cup captains currently playing on the LIV Golf tour resigned from the DP World Tour thus ruling out any chance of again playing for Europe.

They included – Sergio Garcia, Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter, Henrik Stenson and Lee Westwood.

However, two LIV players have yet to resign from the DP World Tour and they include Martin Kaymer and Paul Casey, who between boast nine European Ryder Cup caps – Casey five and Kaymer four.

So, as this stage, and in reading Donald’s comments ahead of this week’s PGA Championship, it would seem the Rome selection door remains open to Casey and Kaymer.

“I’m still excited about all the players we have on offer, both rookies and established players, and I think our team will be very good”, said Donald.

“I think in terms of what Zach (Johnson ,USA Captain) is doing and his options, I think that’s kind of his call. Whether LIV players play on his team, again, I haven’t really talked to him much about it as a captains’ agreement, as you said.

“And let’s not forget there’s still LIV players that can still play on my team. They’re still eigible if they’re members of the Tour and were born in Europe. That is still a possibility for some guys”.

Donald was asked that while the PGA of America, who runs all matters to do with the USA Ryder Cup side, have not banned any US-born LIV golfer from ‘Stars and Stripes’ selection, would he welcome the opportunity to have access to those players such as Garcia, Stenson, Poulter and Westwood in his team regardless if they have resigned from the European Tour

“I think that the team selections should be pretty separate”, said Donald. “I’m in charge of the European team and what’s best for us, and he’s in charge of the USA Team and what’s best for him. I think that’s just how it should be.

“It’s a shame that there were some resignations as a lot of these guys have built their legacy around DP World Tour members and their participation and everything with the Ryder Cup.

“Ultimately that was their decision, and unfortunately they’re off the table now for selection purposes for myself.

“I’ve always tried to concentrate on looking at all the players that week in, week out are committed to try and make that Ryder Cup, and that hasn’t changed. My situation is what it is. I’ve got to always take what I have in front of me and kind of go forward.”

Looking at Donald’s team as it stands now, his ‘automatic’ six would be Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Germany’s Yannick Paul, Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Fitzpatrick and Viktor Hovland.

Five of the six have prior Ryder Cup experience but whatever the make-up of Donald’s dozen there’s sure to be at least four to five players making their Ryder Cup debut in the Italian capital.

“I probably won’t go into names, but I think it’s always good to see how potential rookies do in major championships,” said Donald.  “It takes a different kind of mindset, a different kind of nerve.

“The challenge obviously is totally different to what you’d be playing week in, week out. Obviously a very strong field this week. So again, a good performance here at a major can go a long way.

“There’s been lots of very good rookies and Ryder Cup players who maybe haven’t had the best major record, as well. It’s not everything, but certainly I’ll be keeping a close eye on the scoring.”

Comments are closed.