GOLF: Padraig Harrington hoping for Ryder Cup 2020 captaincy

Padraig Harrington.
Padraig Harrington.

Padraig Harrington would like to succeed Thomas Bjorn as Ryder Cup captain, rather than wait to possibly perform the role on home soil.

Adare Manor, which is owned by a frequent pro-am partner of Harrington, JP McManus, is set to bid to host the biennial contest between Europe and the United States in 2026.

But Harrington feels he could miss out on the captaincy by waiting so long, with the likes of Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter and Paul Lawrie all likely candidates in the future.

“I would love to be a Ryder Cup captain down the road,” Harrington, 46, said in a teleconference to promote the Open Championship’s return to Carnoustie, where he won the Claret Jug in 2007.

“I see [with] my game at the moment that putting my name in the ring to be Ryder Cup captain is coming sooner rather than later as it does not look like I will be playing my way into this year’s team.

“But, as regards to 2026, it’s too late for me to wait. It would be too much of a risk. I would be somewhat out of touch with players by 2026 and there would be a lot of good players coming on the scene by 2026.

“There are good players who are playing now who will be looking for the captaincy in 2026. It would be creating a risk that I might not get the job.

“It would be good timing for me, 2020 for sure, in terms of where I will be in my career.”

Westwood has already said he would like to captain Europe in the 2020 Ryder Cup, which will be held at Whistling Straits, Wisconsin.