The Postman has been in the headlines for plenty of Ryder Cup-related reasons recently - but this one slipped under the radar. Alex Perry explains all in The Slam
Hello everyone. Welcome to this slightly belated edition of The Slam. I figured you would all be too excited about Ian Poulter, Shane Lowry and Sergio Garcia getting Ryder Cup picks to worry about anything else going on.
Speaking of which, have you got Ryder Cup fever yet? It’s all I can think about.
“If I’m in the position that I’m asked in 2025, obviously I would be thrilled and honoured to be in that position,” he explained.
“But until that time comes where my phone rings and I’m asked, it’s a fairytale dream.
“I can only say how amazing it truly would be. It would be an honour to have served Europe as a player and be asked to be captain.”
Couple of things to dissect from this.
First of all, Ian, mate, we all know you’re going to be Ryder Cup captain. Including you. Stop trying to pull the other one – as sweet as it is.
Secondly – and did we all miss this because we were excited about the idea of him being captain? – but it’s telling that Poulter specifically says 2025.
I’m reading between lots of lines here, and I’ve been a bit cheeky with the headline, but it’s long been rumoured that Lee Westwood – who will have just turned 50 when the teams face off in Italy – will skipper in 2023. This, as far as I’m concerned, all but confirms that the Englishman will take charge in two years’ time.
It would certainly make sense for Poulter to captain in 2025, given he lives and plays the majority of his golf in the US.
Oh, and it’s at Bethpage in New York, where sports fans are famously respectful and well-mannered…
While we’re on Poulter…
It pains me to say this but I wouldn’t have taken the Postman to Whistling Straits.
I was joined by my colleagues Steve Carroll, Hannah Holden and Dan Murphy to discuss the matter – and even we as a team were split down the middle – but, for me, Justin Rose should have edged him. You can see my reasoning here.
Billy’s done it again!
What is it with Billy Horschel and winning the week after the Ryder Cup picks are announced?
In 2014 he was in contention for a spot at Gleneagles, and when I chatted to him ahead of The Open at Hoylake for ESPN, he said he’d love to “duke it out” against his good friend Poulter in the Sunday singles.
Horschel famously missed out on Tom Watson’s team to head to Scotland, then went and one back-to-back FedEx Cup Play-offs events – including the Tour Championship.
He’s missed out again this year – in reality, at 17th in the rankings, he wasn’t that close – but he did win the WGC-Match Play earlier this year and has just added the BMW PGA Championship to his trophy cabinet, becoming the first American player to win a Rolex Series event in the process, so perhaps us European fans should be grateful.
But is there a twist in this tale?
Brooks Koepka pulled out of the PGA Tour’s season finale with an injury earlier this month, and, interestingly, he wasn’t in the US Ryder Cup team’s video of players arriving at Whistling Straits.
If the four-time major champion were to be forced out of the competition, Horschel is in with a really good shout.
Horschel makes no secret of his love of West Ham United Football Club, and it was great to see the team’s captain Mark Noble and Declan Rice supporting him at Wentworth.
The trio organised a meal out together, and the European Tour tweeted a screengrab of their WhatsApp conversation:
I can’t get over East Londoner Noble calling Floridian Horschel “geez”.
Right, that’s enough from me. Hopefully that’s got you fired up for the Ryder Cup.
You can follow me on Twitter if that’s your thing. Have a good week, whatever you’re up to.