Ryder Cup: Poulter, Garcia and Lowry named as Harrington's picks as Rose misses out

By Sports Desk September 12, 2021

Europe captain Padraig Harrington has selected Ian Poulter, Sergio Garcia and Shane Lowry as his wildcard picks for the Ryder Cup, but there is no place for Justin Rose on the 12-player roster.

Rose has competed in five of the last six editions of the biennial tournament, but he was overlooked by Harrington after a poor season on the PGA Tour that saw him fail to make the top 125 on the order of merit list.

Harrington opted for experienced names in Garcia and Poulter, while Lowry was given a reprieve of sorts after being knocked out of the automatic selection places when Bernd Wiesberger finished tied-20th at the BMW PGA Championship on Sunday.

Wiesberger, Poulter, Garcia and Lowry join Jon Rahm, Tyrrell Hatton, Paul Casey, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tommy Fleetwood, Rory McIlroy, Lee Westwood and Viktor Hovland, who all qualified through the rankings.

"I am absolutely thrilled with my team, with all of our picks we have the strongest 10, 11 and 12 we've ever had," Harrington said on Sunday.

Asked about the inclusion of Poulter, who is set to compete in his seventh Ryder Cup, Harrington said: "He is undefeated in singles. He lifts himself, he lifts his partners, he lifts the team.

"I'm getting a player who is in probably the best form of his life. He consistently motivates people around him. That's so important to the team. I know I have players who are good enough to deliver and Poulter is at the heart of our team."

Europe are looking to retain the trophy at Whistling Straits later this month following their 17.5-10.5 triumph over the United States in Paris three years ago.

USA finalised their squad on Wednesday, with captain Steve Stricker selecting Jordan Spieth and Xander Schauffele among his wildcard picks.

Schauffele was one of four rookies chosen by Stricker along with Daniel Berger, Harris English and Scottie Scheffler, with Tony Finau – part of the beaten side in 2018 – completing the captain's picks.

Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Patrick Cantlay had already locked in spots for the USA.

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    Tiger Woods reiterated his delight that he is even able to be back out on the course after he made the cut at the US PGA Championship.

    Woods had a difficult first round at Southern Hills County Club, carding 74 to leave him with plenty of work to do to make the weekend.

    Yet the 15-time major champion recovered in fine fashion on Friday, going round in 69 to leave him at three over and T53.

    While a push for a fifth US PGA Championship title – and a first since 2007 – seems unlikely, Woods is relishing being back at the biggest events.

    He returned at the Masters last month just over a year after suffering serious injuries in a car accident in California.

    "Well, just the fact that I'm able to play golf again and play in our biggest championships," he said after his round on Friday.

    "As I alluded to earlier, you guys all know, I'm not going to be playing a lot of tournaments going forward. They're going to be the biggest tournaments.

    "I want to be able to play the major championships. I've always loved playing them.

    "Coming back here to a place that I've had success on, to play against the best players in the world, that's what we all want to be able to do.

    "Fortunately enough, I'm able to somehow do it. I've had a great PT staff that have put Humpty Dumpty back together."

    Bubba Watson matched the lowest round in PGA Championship history as he shot 63 in his second round to propel himself up the leaderboard.

    And Watson's effort is something Woods hopes he can replicate over the weekend to put himself in contention.

    "I'm hoping I can shoot a number like Bubba did today," he added. "That's where my mind is at right now. I've got to do some things physically to get myself there tomorrow and it will be a quick turnaround.

    "That's the reward you get for just making the cut. You get to tee off early the next day, and hopefully I can get it in. The weather is supposed to be a little more difficult and be a little more testy, and hopefully that's the case.

    "If that's the case, hopefully I can post a good round and at least move up the board, get myself within striking distance on Sunday. I'm pretty far back, but you just never know.

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    Woods was even par through the front-nine on his second trip around the course, and birdied the 10th to move to one under, but a double-bogey on 11 after a run-in with a bunker threatened to end his week early.

    The double moved him to five over for the tournament, with the cut-line at four over, meaning he needed to go under-par over the last seven holes.

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    When asked about the ways he is limited by his injuries, Woods did not shy away from it, but said his mission is still to win.

    "There's a lot of things – but it's just the way it is," he said.

    "Over the course of my career I've used my hands quite well, and relied on feel and hitting shots. When you're out there it's just about hitting the ball the right number and getting it done.

    "There's a mission – the mission is to go ahead and win this thing somehow. I know sometimes it doesn't exactly feel well, but that's just what it is. That's life, that's sports. 

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