fbpx
Jose Maria Olazabal

Luke Donald names Jose Maria Olazabal as fourth Ryder Cup Vice Captain

The Spaniard, famous for his captaincy in 2012 at Medinah, returns to the European team setup this year in Rome

 

European Ryder Cup team captain Luke Donald has named Jose Maria Olazabal as his fourth Vice Captain.

Olazabal was famously the winning skipper in 2012 Ryder Cup, when Europe fought back from 10-6 down on the final day to win at Medinah.

The Spaniard joins Thomas Bjorn, Edoardo Molinari and Nicolas Colsaerts for the Europe vs USA clash at Marco Simone, in Rome, at the end of September.

“With my previous experiences in the Ryder Cup I am obviously thrilled to be back involved once again. I am really looking forward to feeling that special adrenaline flow, the intensity and the electricity that only the Ryder Cup can bring – I’m really excited to be part of it all again,” Olazabal said.

“It was a very nice surprise to be asked by Luke. I didn’t expect it but I was delighted when the call came. My role will be the same as the rest of the Vice Captains, namely to support and help Luke and the 12 players in any way we can, so they can perform at their best and be able to win that trophy back.

“I have no doubts that Luke will be a great Captain. He has played in the Ryder Cup four times and won four times and he therefore knows what is required to perform well in the match.

“He is great on detail and how important things like team spirit are. On top of all of that, he is still very much a competitive player playing at a high level. Because of that, he is close to the players and he knows what they will need to perform to their best. My job as Vice-Captain will be to help him achieve that.”

Olazabal featured seven times in the Ryder Cup as a player, with Europe winning three times. He tallied an impressive 20.5 points over those seven appearances.

His partnership with compatriot Seve Ballesteros is the greatest in Ryder Cup history, with the pair scoring 12 points in their 15 matches. No other pair has more than six points.

Ballesteros and Olazabal

He has also been a Vice Captain on three previous occasions. Olazabal was part of the European backroom team in 2008 under Sir Nick Faldo, 2010 under Colin Montgomerie, and 2014 under Paul McGinley.

Donald, who played under Olazabal’s captaincy in 2012, said: “When you think of José María Olázabal, you immediately think of the Ryder Cup. He brings amazing passion and I couldn’t be more excited to have him on board.

“He was my Captain when I last played in the Ryder Cup – at Medinah in 2012 – and I thoroughly enjoyed playing for him that year. He picked me to play number one in the singles and that was hugely gratifying.

“To know he had that respect and confidence in me to go out and lead Europe in such a pressurised last day environment meant a lot and this feels, perhaps, that I am returning that favour a little bit, as I have a huge amount of confidence in him.

“Just his mere presence brings energy to any Ryder Cup environment and I saw that first hand when I asked him to be involved in the Hero Cup we staged in Abu Dhabi at the beginning of this year.

“He was such a big part of that week, being with the players and sharing stories with them of just what the Ryder Cup is all about.

“People notice when José María walks into a room and you could see at the Hero Cup how much everyone respected him and admired him for all he’s done in the game. I could not be more excited to have him on my team.”

What do you think of the appointment of Jose Maria Olazabal vice captain? Will it be good for Team Europe? Let us know with a Tweet!

Jose Maria Olazabal Vice Captain

Matt Coles

Matt Coles

Mention a European country, and Matt will tell you which resorts make the National Club Golfer Top 100s: European Resorts list. He might even throw in who designed the golf course and how many rooms the hotel has got at each one…

Matt got into the game of golf from a young age, following his old man to the local golf club. He fell for the sport, and now can’t seem to go a day without thinking about how to improve his game (Thanks Dad!). Matt has been a member of Howley Hall GC in Leeds since 2020, and is just about managing to maintain a single-figure handicap. He likes to remind people that he once broke 75, but won’t tell people that it was on a shortened course during the winter.

He moved to Leeds after graduating from the University of Central Lancashire with a First Class Honours degree in Sports Journalism. Matt joined NCG after almost five years travelling the world with the Professional Squash Association, working on events in all four corners of the globe.

Matt currently plays a Cobra King LTDx driver and RadSpeed 3-wood. TaylorMade monopolise the rest of his bag, with a SIM UDI, M5 irons and both Milled Grind and HI-TOE wedges, along with a Monza Redline putter. He uses a Vice Pro Plus golf ball, because he’s a bit different…

Away from golf, Matt is a Manchester United fan, and a keen runner, having ran the Rob Burrow Leeds Marathon (his first and possibly last), in May 2023.

Latest Posts

Jon Rahm Tyrrell Hatton Ryder Cup fines quality

Ryder Cup

Why let fines and suspensions dilute the quality of the Ryder Cup?

By

Read full article about Why let fines and suspensions dilute the quality of the Ryder Cup?
Padraig Harrington and the Ryder Cup

Ryder Cup

Exclusive with Padraig Harrington: Steely Keegan Bradley is a ‘very strong’ Ryder Cup captain pick

By

Read full article about Exclusive with Padraig Harrington: Steely Keegan Bradley is a ‘very strong’ Ryder Cup captain pick
keegan bradley captain

Ryder Cup

Don’t lie. You never had Keegan Bradley as US Ryder Cup captain

By

Read full article about Don’t lie. You never had Keegan Bradley as US Ryder Cup captain
paul McGinley

Ryder Cup

Paul McGinley becomes Strategic Advisor to Luke Donald for 2025 Ryder Cup

By

Read full article about Paul McGinley becomes Strategic Advisor to Luke Donald for 2025 Ryder Cup

Ryder Cup

Jon Rahm: ‘I would do whatever I can’ to make Ryder Cup

By

Read full article about Jon Rahm: ‘I would do whatever I can’ to make Ryder Cup
jon rahm ryder cup

Ryder Cup

Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton offered renewed Ryder Cup hope by DP World Tour chief

By

Read full article about Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton offered renewed Ryder Cup hope by DP World Tour chief
jon rahm ryder cup

Ryder Cup

Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton must ‘jump hurdles’ to play another Ryder Cup

By

Read full article about Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton must ‘jump hurdles’ to play another Ryder Cup
shane lowry joe lacava

Ryder Cup

‘You p****!’: Shane Lowry and Joe LaCava’s Ryder Cup row revealed on Netflix

By

Read full article about ‘You p****!’: Shane Lowry and Joe LaCava’s Ryder Cup row revealed on Netflix
keegan bradley full swing

Ryder Cup

‘Anger, sadness’: Keegan Bradley Ryder Cup rejection laid bare on Full Swing

By

Read full article about ‘Anger, sadness’: Keegan Bradley Ryder Cup rejection laid bare on Full Swing