The new captain of the European Ryder Cup team, Luke Donald, is not sure if LIV Golf players will be able to participate in next year’s event, but says he is committed to choosing the strongest twelve-man team to challenge the United States.
Luke Donald, statements
The 44-year-old Donald replaced Henrik Stenson as captain on Monday after the Swede was stripped of the job days before he signed up for the lucrative Saudi-backed breakaway league. Golfers participating in LIV Golf events have been suspended by the PGA Tour and sanctioned by Europe’s DP World Tour.
“Part of being captain is creating a strong unified 12-man team, and I’ll be working on that for the next 14 months,” Donald told reporters. “Hopefully, we’ll get some clarity on that situation and we can start to make some decisions. There is a legal situation going on. But I don’t think that situation will be resolved any time soon,” he warned.
The LIV series is funded by the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund and has shaken the sport to its core with Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Bubba Watson among its leading names.
Donald, former number 1 in the world, explained that he has no intention of following the same path. “I have signed a contract and I intend to fulfill it. I give you my word that I will be here for the next fourteen months,” said the Englishman. “I’m excited about this opportunity,” he added.
The Ryder Cup will take place in Rome from September 29 to October 2 next year. Defending champions United States will be led by two-time Grand Slam winner Zach Johnson.
Luke Donald, born December 7, 1977 in Hemel Hempstead, is an English golf player. In 2011, he became the fifteenth No. 1 in the world. He is also the second, after his compatriot Lee Westwood, to reach this rank without having won a Grand Slam title.
He was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) on June 16, 2012, for services to golf.