The new European captain may reduce the number of Ryder Cup wildcard picks to three

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Harrington Wants To Reduce Number Of Ryder Cup Wildcard Picks

Padraig Harrington has been named as Europe’s new Ryder Cup captain.

The three-time Major winner was announced as the man to lead Europe at Whistling Straits in 2020 in a press conference at Wentworth.

Harrington spoke on a number of topics after the announcement including his desire to decrease the number of captain’s picks.

Ahead of the 2018 Ryder Cup, the number of wildcards for Team Europe was raised from three to four after previously being two up until 2012.

However, Harrington appears to want to drop that number lower back to two or three.

That’s because number nine on the standings, the man to miss out by a single place, is highly unlikely to be ignored for a wildcard pick.

Harrington told BBC Sport,”I’m getting some stats done at the moment on whether to go for three or four.

“My thinking is, does the ninth guy ever get skipped over?

“I don’t think it has happened and I think players are more comfortable and more confident if they’ve qualified directly rather than getting a pick.

“So I’d prefer more players to qualify than if I picked them but I will have a look at those stats. Anecdotally number nine always gets a pick so why not let them qualify?”

Thomas Bjorn chose Ian Poulter, Paul Casey, Henrik Stenson and Sergio Garcia as his four wildcard picks in 2018.

That came two years after Darren Clarke picked Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Ian Poulter as his three.

Poulter was again a wildcard pick in 2012 where Jose Maria Olazabal had just two picks, with Nicolas Colsaerts being the second.

Harrington becomes the third Irishman to captain Europe in the last four Ryder Cups.

The match takes place in 2020 at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin.

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