Padraig Harrington chosen as Europe captain for 2020 Ryder Cup

Harrington was a vice captain under Thomas Bjorn when Europe won the Ryder Cup in September

Irish golfer Padraig Harrington has been confirmed as Ryder Cup captain for Team Europe ahead of the tournament next year.

"There seems to be a natural progression, " Harrington said during a news conference at European Tour headquarters near London.

This was Bjorn's gig and even if the dogs in the streets of Versailles knew that Harrington was nailed on to be his successor, a Ryder Cup captain's word - for one week every two years at least - bears inordinate weight. He played in three USA Ryder Cup teams and on five winning Presidents Cup sides while he captained the USA Team to victory in the 2017 Presidents Cup.

Harrington has promised to "find an edge" but it's the United States who are favourites to land the Ryder Cup on home soil at 8/13, with Harrington a 6/4 shot to win the match and defend the trophy the Europeans won so emphatically in Paris previous year.

"Becoming captain is not something I went into lightly", Harrington said after he was appointed. "I have to ensure that I find an edge to make the team perform to the best of their abilities and hopefully get a win".

I know we want continuity in Europe. "Hopefully I will pull it together and say the right things at the right times".

Europe defend the trophy won by Thomas Bjorn and his team at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin in September 2020 and it will be Harrington who will lead the team.

"You are putting it on the line when you become the Ryder Cup captain".

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"I'm excited with the whole idea, I hope I can add something to it", added Harrington.

Harrington spoke of finding that little edge to give Europe the best possible chance of retaining the trophy in Wisconsin, and he'll leave no stone unturned over the next 18 months or so.

Harrington has a wealth of experience when it comes to the Ryder Cup.

The Irishman became the favourite after England's former world number one Lee Westwood, one of the five European vice-captains in 2018, indicated a preference to do the job in Italy in 2022 when Rome hosts the event.

Nearly from the time the last putt dropped at the Ryder Cup in France, Harrington was deemed the likely pick for 2020. "I'm very much looking forward to taking on this role".

The defender, who can play at centre-back as well as right-back, moved to the Bundesliga from Lille in 2016 and soon established himself as a star man for Stuttgart, starting all 34 league games last season. I think Thomas was blessed with the best team we've ever had in France. "You just have to know the man behind the scenes".

"But it is daunting because you want to do a good job".

"He is as European as they come".

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