It looks likely Darren Clarke will be named as Europe’s 2016 Ryder Cup captain on Wednesday. The major bookmakers agree it’s more than probable – most are no longer taking bets.

It looks likely Darren Clarke will be named as Europe’s 2016 Ryder Cup captain on Wednesday. The major bookmakers agree it’s more than probable – most are no longer taking bets.

The competition for the 2016 captaincy at Hazeltine National in Minnesota had been a two-horse race between Clarke and Spain’s Miguel Ángel Jiménez, and it was thought the selection panel, made up of former captains Colin Montgomerie, Jose Maria Olazbal and Paul McGinley, plus European Tour Chief Exectuive George O’Grady and players’ representative David Howell, had split loyalties.

But it seems a consensus has been reached with the key being Paul McGinley. According to a report in the Daily Telegraph, it’s believed he will look beyond past personal issues between himself and Clarke to back the Ulsterman.

Clarke and McGinley were long-time friends on tour but the pair fell out in the build up to the 2014 Ryder Cup. Clarke had originally promised not to stand in the Irishman’s way in the race to captaincy. But Clarke then announced his desire to take the helm. Even when he withdrew his candidacy, Clarke confirmed his support for Colin Montgomerie’s return to the post.

Despite this, McGinley has pledged to lend his backing for the 2016 job to the man that the players want to be in charge. And, with Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood expressing support for Clarke, McGinley will seemingly have little choice but to go with the Northern Irishman.

Montgomerie has loyalty to Clarke thanks to his support for the Scot in 2014 while Olazabal (although a countryman of Jimenez) is a great friend of Clarke. It’s thought that Howell and O’Grady will only step in to the decision making process if the three past captains can’t reach agreement. It now looks highly unlikely that will be necessary.