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Harrington takes Ryder Cup captaincy with some trepidation

Harrington takes Ryder Cup captaincy with some trepidation

Three-time major victor Padraig Harrington believes he is putting his career on the line by taking on the Ryder Cup captaincy in 2020.

Two-time Ryder Cup player Paul Lawrie also welcomed Harrington's selection, describing it as a "brilliant appointment".

However, the 47-year-old Irishman is well aware of the damage a Ryder Cup defeat can do to a captain's reputation having played under six-time major victor Nick Faldo in Europe's defeat at Valhalla in 2008.

Harrington was a vice-captain at Le Golf National last September as Bjorn marshalled Europe to an emphatic victory.

"Because you are putting it on the line when you become Ryder Cup captain".

"There seems to be a natural progression, " Harrington said during a news conference at European Tour headquarters near London.

The Irishman said: 'Obviously I'm thrilled to be named as Ryder Cup captain for 2020, it's not something I went into lightly.

"It's something I did think long and hard about", he added.

"I will definitely take bits from all of them".

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"The players want continuity, it makes my job easier that I have their confidence, they've spoken to me publicly and privately".

He has got great experience in the U.S., so he won't be intimidated.

Harrington becomes the third Irish captain out of the past four, following Paul McGinley and Darren Clarke. Harrington, whose experience of the Ryder Cup is vast, must make sure he is just as thorough in determining who is worthy of a pick.

"The reminder we have every day is the Harrington Room where we have all his trophies from his amateur days right through to the Walker Cup, Ryder Cup, then the Majors and competitions around the world", Mr King said.

"It's an away match, and I have to be part of this and try to find an edge to try and get the most out of their abilities and hopefully get a win, " Harrington said.

Harrington has promised to "find an edge" but it's the United States who are favourites to land the Ryder Cup on home soil at 8/13, with Harrington a 6/4 shot to win the match and defend the trophy the Europeans won so emphatically in Paris a year ago.

"He's got a lot of things in his favour, I think Thomas was blessed with the best European team we ever had in France, I think Pod will be blessed with an even better team than that. You just have to know the man behind the scenes".

As a player, Harrington made his Ryder Cup debut at the Country Club in Brookline in 1999 and was ever-present for the following five editions, helping Europe to victory in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010.

However, Bookmakers have been quick to make United States of America favourites - although they are yet to confirm their skipper with the likes of Steve Stricker and Fred Couples in contention.


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