stenson-confirms-liv-switch,-hopes-to-represent-team-europe-at-future-ryder-cups

Stenson confirms LIV switch, hopes to represent Team Europe at future Ryder Cups

Henrik Stenson will make his LIV Golf debut at the Bedminster event from July 29-31; Swede says he is disappointed to lose Europe’s Ryder Cup captaincy but says he understands the decision

Last Updated: 20/07/22 6:52pm

    Henrik Stenson has confirmed he is joining the Saudi-backed LIV Golf International Series and says he is “disappointed” to be stripped of the Ryder Cup captaincy but hopes to represent Team Europe in the future.

    Stenson was announced in March as Europe’s successor to former captain Padraig Harrington, having made five appearances as a player before serving as a vice-captain in the record-breaking loss at Whistling Straits last September.

    The 46-year-old was linked to LIV Golf even before he was handed the captaincy role for next September’s contest in Italy but during press conferences at the time he said he was “fully committed to the captaincy and to Ryder Cup Europe”.

    But Stenson has now confirmed his switch to LIV Golf and will make his debut at the upcoming Bedminster event on July 29-31.

    Writing on Twitter, Stenson said: “Unfortunately my decision to play in LIV events has triggered Ryder Cup Europe to communicate that it is not possible for me to continue in my role as Ryder Cup captain.

    “This is despite me making specific arrangements with LIV golf, who have been supportive of my role as captain, to ensure I could fulfil the obligations of the captaincy. While I disagree with this decision, for now it is a decision that I accept.

    “I am hugely disappointed to not be allowed to continue in my role but wish you all the best in your ongoing preparations.”

    Who could replace Stenson?

    Thomas Bjorn had already been appointed as one of Stenson’s vice-captains, having led Europe to victory in impressive fashion at Le Golf National in 2018, with the Dane a potential candidate to take on the captaincy for a second successive home contest.

    Scotland’s Paul Lawrie was under consideration when Stenson was initially appointed and is likely to be once again, with former world No 1 Luke Donald a possible option having featured in four winning teams and also acting twice as a vice-captain.

    Lawrie said on social media his name had ‘never been out of the hat’ for captaincy consideration and told Sky Sports News: “I remain committed to the Tour and would still like nothing more than to be the next Ryder Cup captain. Given the opportunity, I would see it as one of the highlights of my career”

    Edoardo Molinari was already a confirmed member of Stenson’s backroom staff, ahead of the Ryder Cup heading to Italy for the first time, while Robert Karlsson is another contender having served as a vice-captain for the previous two European teams.

    More to follow….

    This is a breaking news story that is being updated and more details will be published shortly. Please refresh this page for the latest updates.

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