The Irishman looks likely to become Europe's next Ryder Cup Captain

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Harrington Favourite To Become 2020 Ryder Cup Captain

Lee Westwood has ruled himself out of becoming the next European Ryder Cup Captain, putting Padraig Harrington in the driver’s seat.

Westwood told the Telegraph that he “we will wait until Rome” to bid for his chance to captain his continent.

In an interview with Golf Monthly earlier this year Westwood said Rome was his goal.

“I’d like to do Italy in 2022,” he said.

The 23-time European Tour winner stepping aside for the 2020 role means that Padraig Harrington is now almost certainly going to get the job.

Thomas Bjorn confirmed that today, stating that Harrington is “very much the favourite.”

“I’ve always said when you’ve got somebody that’s a three-time major champion and has the pedigree that Padraig has and holds the respect of the players that he does, it would be difficult to see him not doing it at some stage,” the Dane said ahead of the British Masters.

“And if he wants it this time around, it’s difficult to get around that he is very much the favourite to get the job.”

Harrington has been a Vice Captain in the last three Ryder Cups and made six appearances during his career as a player.

The Irishman is the leading candidate, with Paul Lawrie and Miguel Angel Jimenez also possibles.

However, three-time major winner Harrington is expected to be the man to lead the side at Whistling Straits in two years.

The decision will be made in December by the Ryder Cup Europe selection panel which includes the past three Captains – Thomas Bjorn, Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley – as well as European Tour Chief Executive Keith Pelley and someone from the European Tour Players Committee.

Westwood’s decision to step down from consideration follows comments in the media from two of Europe’s star players endorsing Harrington.

Justin Rose revealed that Harrington is the “front-runner” and Rory McIlroy previously stated that Harrington is the man for the job due to his experience of winning titles in the USA.

“I’ve always thought Padraig would be a good captain in the United States,” McIlroy said after Europe won the 2018 Ryder Cup.

Related: Who will be USA Ryder Cup Captain in 2020?

“He’s won a lot of golf tournaments over there, including a [US] PGA Championship.”

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