Steve Stricker Names US Ryder Cup Team
SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER was the surprise name when Steve Stricker finally announced his six Ryder Cup wildcards - and there was another big surprise when he failed to pick Patrick Reed.
Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Patrick Cantlay had already qualified for the team and will be joined by Scheffler, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Harris English and Daniel Berger.
Reed has been a key and enthusiastic member of the Ryder Cup process but has only recently recovered from a serious bout of pneumonia and that clearly played a part in Stricker's decision to leave him out.
Stricker said of his picks: “We are super-excited about these six individuals. I talked to each and every one of them a couple of days ago and they are extremely excited and happy and fired up to be part of this team.
“All a great fit for Whistling Straits. They all can't wait to do one thing and that's to bring the cup back where it belongs."
Addressing the subject of having six rookies in his side, he said: “We’re looking for the best players to perform here and these six guys fit Whistling Straits to a tee. We’ve done some analysis of those rookies since 2008 and US rookies have a 40-29-17 record in Ryder Cups and they fare very well in this type of format.”
Team. Complete.— Ryder Cup USA (@RyderCupUSA) September 8, 2021
With his Captain's Picks locked, @SteveStricker selects:
???????? Scottie Scheffler
???????? @JordanSpieth pic.twitter.com/wFGR3bw8IH
Finau said: "I am thrilled to be part of the team and hope that we get the job done and bring the cup home."
Stricker singled out Schauffele as a player who could be a key member of the team. Schauffele said: "I am so excited about what lies ahead and am so grateful to be picked. We have some great young players. I don't have a lot of experience in a team environment but I am sure that our fans will be properly excited to come out and support us."
Scheffler is a true rookie, having not played in either the Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup and Stricker said that he expects him to make a lot of birdies at Whistling Straits.
Scheffler said: "To get the call was amazing. The past month has been pretty stressful and I am honoured to be a part of this team. I am excited to get out there and bring the cup back home."
The captain is clearly delighted to see Spieth playing well again and clearly expects him to perform.
And Spieth is thrilled to be playing in his fourth match. "Whistling Straits is a beautiful course," he said. "You have to shape your ball both ways so it requires shotmaking ability. It tests every part of your game. I know that if the match had been played last year I probably wouldn't have made the team and I thank Steve for putting his faith in me. I love the Ryder Cup.. There's nothing else like it in our sport."
European captain Padraig Harrington will finalise his European team at the conclusion of the BMW PGA Championship.
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