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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Automatic Euros Are Named to the Ryder Cup Team

The Ryder Cup teams are finally beginning to take shape. The automatic qualifiers for the Euro Team were released on Monday.

Justin Rose at Rio opening ceremonies

Four players made the team via the Ryder Cup European Points List while five more qualified through the Ryder Cup World Points List. Here they are, in alphabetical order.
  1. Rafa Cabrera Bello
  2. Matthew Fitzpatrick
  3. Sergio Garcia
  4. Rory McIlroy
  5. Justin Rose
  6. Henrik Stenson
  7. Andy Sullivan
  8. Danny Willett
  9. Chris Wood
Euro Captain Darren Clarke still gets to name three Captain's Picks next Tuesday (that's August 30). Some question whether he'll pick some more young rookies like Russell Knox, who has two wins this season, or go for more veterans like Lee Westwood and Luke Donald, who have been playing well lately.

You can make a good argument for either approach, although I don't think he needs to worry about having too many rookies. Most of his "rookies" are multiple winners, and Willett's the reigning Masters champ. Add THE OPEN champ (Stenson) and the Olympic gold medalist (Rose), and remember that Garcia and McIlroy have both won this season. What's there to worry about?

As for the US Team:
  • They'll finalize their Automatic 8 on Sunday, August 28. At present, only Brooks Koepka would be a rookie.
  • They add three picks on Sunday, September 11, after the BMW Championship. I think US Captain Davis Love really needs to pick some rookies, just to give more players some experience. You don't want your experienced players to drop off all at once in a few years and leave only noobs on the team.
  • And the final pick (aka the Billy-Ho pick) is named on Sunday, September 25, after the Tour Championship.
So Sunday is the next date for team news. But at least we're finally in the home stretch for Ryder Cup action!

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