On this day in 2009: Colin Montgomerie named Europe’s Ryder Cup captain

Colin Montgomerie was appointed captain of Europe’s 2010 Ryder Cup team on this day 13 years ago.

Montgomerie, then 45, was an eight-time Ryder Cup veteran who made his debut in the biennial match against the United States in 1991.

The Scot never lost a Ryder Cup singles match and his total of 23½ points (20–9–7) is fourth on Europe’s all-time list behind Sergio Garcia (25½), Sir Nick Faldo (25) and Bernhard Langer (24).

Golf – 38th Ryder Cup – Europe v USA – Day Three – Celtic Manor Resort
Europe captain Colin Montgomerie congratulates Edoardo Molinari (right) at the 2010 Ryder Cup (Lynne Cameron/PA)

“This is obviously one of my proudest moments,” Montgomerie said on his appointment in 2009.

“It just seems the time is right for me to take the helm here and be captain.

“It is a huge responsibility having lost the last Ryder Cup.

“It is important we do everything we can to claim back the Ryder Cup in 2010.”

Golf – 38th Ryder Cup – Europe v USA – Day Four – Celtic Manor Resort
Rory McIlroy made his Ryder Cup debut at Celtic Manor in 2010 (Lynne Cameron/PA)

Montgomerie ruled out any prospect of being a playing skipper and later appointed Garcia, Darren Clarke, Paul McGinley, Jose Maria Olazabal and Thomas Bjorn as his vice-captains.

Rory McIlroy made his Ryder Cup debut under Montgomerie, while Edoardo Molinari, Francesco Molinari, Martin Kaymer, Peter Hanson and Ross Fisher ensured half the team were rookies.

Corey Pavin’s United States team included major champions Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink and Zach Johnson.

Future Masters champions Bubba Watson and Dustin Johnson were also on a stacked American side, as were fellow rookies Rickie Fowler and Matt Kuchar.

Golf – 38th Ryder Cup – Europe v USA – Day Four – Celtic Manor Resort
Europe got their hands on the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor in 2010 (Rui Vieira/PA)

Europe led by 9½-6½ heading into the final singles session, which was delayed until the Monday due to heavy rain on the first day at Celtic Manor.

The Americans fought back on the final day before Graeme McDowell sparked wild scenes on the 17th green by closing out the anchor match against Hunter Mahan.

Europe’s 14½-13½ success was their sixth victory in eight contests and their fourth consecutive win on home soil.