Henrik Stenson named Europe’s Ryder Cup captain

Henrik Stenson Ryder Cup

Sweden’s Henrik Stenson has been named Europe’s Ryder Cup captain for next year’s event at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome.

The 45-year-old has made five appearances in the tournament as a player, winning three times.

Stenson was a vice-captain under Padraig Harrington for Europe’s 19-9 defeat to the United States at Whistling Straits last September.

“I am absolutely thrilled and delighted to be the European Ryder Cup captain – it is a huge honour and I was humbled to get the call confirming the news,” said the Swede.

“I would like to thank the selection panel for believing in me and will say to them, and every European golf fan, that I will do everything in my power and leave no stone unturned in the quest to get the Ryder Cup back in European hands.”

Stenson added: “The Ryder Cup is golf, and sport, at its very best. I got goosebumps every time I pulled on a European shirt as a player and that will be magnified in the role of captain.

“While it is great for me personally, it is also great for my country and all the players from Sweden who have played for Europe with such distinction since Joakim Haeggman became the first in 1993.

“When I started out as a professional golfer, it was beyond my wildest dreams that, one day, I would follow in the footsteps of legends of the game such as Seve (Ballesteros) and be the European Ryder Cup captain.

“But today proves that, sometimes, dreams do come true.”

As a player, the 2016 Open champion – who becomes the first Swede to be captain – has won 11 points from 19 Ryder Cup matches.

He holed the winning put on his debut at the K Club in 2006, with his best event form-wise coming in Paris 12 years later, when he enjoyed a 100 per cent record from his three matches.

European Ryder Cup director Guy Kinnings believes Stenson’s credentials fit the bill.

“Henrik has all the qualities to be a great captain,” he said.

“He has an incredibly impressive golfing CV as a major champion, two-time European number one and FedEx Cup winner, and in the Ryder Cup he played five times and played with distinction, including holing the winning putt in 2006 at the K Club.

“So he comes with all the credibility of what he has achieved, and as we all know a dry a sense of humour and a fantastic warm personality, but he is also a ferocious competitor.

“He is hugely respected by the players and admired by everyone involved with the game and the Ryder Cup.”