Padraig Harrington hopeful Ryder Cup can go ahead to give public a sports fix
Europe captain Padraig Harrington is hoping the Ryder Cup can “take one for the world of team sport” and go ahead this year.
The biennial event between Europe and the United States is scheduled to take place from September 25-27 in Wisconsin, although the coronavirus pandemic means it is in doubt.
There have been 13 events cancelled or postponed so far on the PGA Tour, with the action scheduled to resume on June 8.
Players such as Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm are not in favour of the event being held behind closed doors – but Harrington wants the much-anticipated event to go ahead for the good of the game.
Harrington admitted on Sky Sports Golf: “None of the players want a Ryder Cup without the fans.
“The reason we play the Ryder Cup is for the glory of being out there, we get the opportunity of being like a footballer out in the middle of a stadium with people cheering.
“That doesn’t happen unless you’re winning a tournament and you’re the home favourite but at the Ryder Cup that happens all the way through for six days.
“The players crave that – they don’t get paid to play – so they crave that opportunity for glory.
“No one wants to play behind closed doors but they (tournament organisers) are keeping a prudent eye on it and they know if the PGA Tour events in June go off well behind closed doors it’s a possibility.
“The players don’t want it but we might have to take one for the world of team sport and put an event on that people can watch. It wouldn’t be the same for us but we’re craving sport on TV.”
The 48-year-old Irishman continued: “I keep saying if they put on any live sport, a lower division football game, we’d all be watching it because we want to see something live, something that’s unexpected.
“The unpredictability of an event would be nice, you don’t realise what you miss.”
Europe were led by Thomas Bjorn when they won the 2018 event and Harrington hinted at a new vice-captain in an interview on Tuesday.
He added on Sky Sports Golf: “I’m trying to be as prepared as I can be…I had a phone call with one of my new – woah, I nearly said the word there, I possibly did say the word there – one of my vice-captains yesterday. Is this live?”
Rhys Enoch two shots off Tenerife lead after stunning start ends in opening 65
Francesco Laporta leads the way at the Canary Islands Championship on nine under par.
Can Justin Thomas replicate his 2017 PGA Championship winning form at Quail Hollow this week?
The 28-year-old found success playing the course in August but hasn’t been able to repeat it in May.
Rory McIlroy goes back to happy hunting ground as he looks for a return to form
The former world number one is 15th in the rankings as he prepares for the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow.
Rory McIlroy ‘very much against’ breakaway golf circuit
The Northern Irishman said he had first been contacted about the idea in 2014.
Tributes planned to mark 10-year anniversary of Seve Ballesteros’ death
The great died at the age of 54 following a battle with cancer.
Top players chase records not dollars – Webb Simpson dismisses breakaway plan
Simpson said there were ‘too many unknowns’ for a Premier Golf League to work.
Can Quail Hollow work its magic on Rory McIlroy again and revive his flagging form?
The Northern Irishman has a strong relationship with the host of this week’s Wells Fargo Championship.
Nicolai Von Dellingshausen out in front in Tenerife
Von Dellingshausen added a second round of 62 to his opening 64 to reach 16 under par.
Is Bryson DeChambeau a good bet to defend his US Open title in June?
Golf’s biggest hitter devised the perfect strategy to win at Winged Foot – but can he do the same at Torrey Pines?
John Catlin one-shot off lead at Tenerife Open after threatening to record 59
The American had covered his first 13 holes in 10 under but finished with an opening round of 63.