Olazabal appointed Ryder Cup captain

Olazabal appointed Ryder Cup captain

The European Tour’s Tournament Committee has confirmed the appointment of Jose Maria Olazabal as European captain for the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah in Chicago.

The committee met on Tuesday morning before making the expected announcement that the 44-year-old Spaniard would take over from Colin Montgomerie who led the European team to victory at Celtic Manor last October.

Olazabal was the overwhelming favourite and the only name being put forward for next year’s defence of the trophy. The two-time Masters Champion is one of the most popular figures on the European Tour and his Ryder Cup record has been an inspiration since he first teamed up with Seve Ballesteros at Muirfield in 1987. The Spanish duo forged one of the great Ryder Cup partnerships and were beaten just twice in 15 matches. Olazabal went on to win seven caps as a player making his final appearance at the K Club in Ireland in 2006 when he won all three games as Europe concluded a hat-trick of Ryder Cup wins over the USA.

Two years later he served as vice captain to Nick Faldo at Valhalla and was part of Colin Montgomerie’s back-up team at Celtic Manor.

The only concern about the appointment rested with Olazabal’s ongoing medical problem, he played just three times last year as he battled with chronic rheumatism but he is determined to be more involved this year. He is due to appear in this week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship and is signed up to participate in the rest of the Middle East swing as the tour moves on to Bahrain, Qatar and Dubai.

Online bookmakers rate Olazabal's chances of celebrating the news with a win in Abu Dhabi to be extreme and bet365 is offering odds of 20/1 for the new Ryder Cup skipper to finish in the top ten.

 

Jose Maria Olazabal Ryder Cup Playing Record 1987-2006
No. Matches

Record

W-L-H

Singles

W-L-H

Foursomes

W-L-H

Fourballs

W-L-H

Total

Points

%

Points

7 31 18-8-5 2-4-1 7-2-1 9-2-3 20.5 0.66

 

 

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