GOLF: Clarke named as Ryder Cup vice captain

Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke acknowledges the crowd on the 18th during day two of the 2012 Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club, Lytham & St Annes. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday July 20, 2012. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only. No commercial use. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information.
Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke acknowledges the crowd on the 18th during day two of the 2012 Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club, Lytham & St Annes. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday July 20, 2012. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only. No commercial use. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information.

PORTRUSH golfer Darren Clarke has been named as one of José María Olazábal’s vice captain’s for the 2012 Ryder Cup.

Clarke joins Thomas Björn and Paul McGinley as Olazábal’s right hand men for the game against the United States at Medinah Country Club, Chicago, Illinois, from September 28-30.

Björn, Clarke and McGinley have between them played in ten Ryder Cups, with no fewer than nine wins to their credit, and together represent an accomplished and knowledgeable ‘Backroom Team’ after working together for The European Team when the Cup was regained at the Celtic Manor Resort, Wales, in 2010.

Olazábal, who played in seven Ryder Cup matches between 1987 and 2006 and was a Vice Captain in 2008 and 2010, said: “I could not be more delighted than to have Thomas, Darren and Paul as Vice Captains especially as we bonded so well supporting Colin Montgomerie in 2010.

“All three are world class golfers with tremendous experience of playing in The Ryder Cup which is absolutely invaluable.

“For me to have these guys – all such great friends – by my side is fantastic. I know like me they will now be counting down the days to to Medinah with one aim – to return home with the Cup.

The ten automatic qualifiers for The European Ryder Cup Team – five from the European Points List and five from the World Points List – will be confirmed on Sunday August 26.

Olazábal will announce his two Captain’s Picks at a special 2012 Ryder Cup Conference at Noon on Monday, August 27, at The Gleneagles Hotel, Perthshire, Scotland.