Tom Watson named 2014 Ryder Cup captain
Watson will be 65, the oldest captain in Ryder Cup history, when the matches are held at Gleneagles in Scotland. Watson has won eight majors, including five British Opens, and captained the Americans to a victory in England in 1993, right, their last victory overseas. Since continental Europe joined the competition, only Jack Nicklaus has held the position twice.
Watson made a Broadway analogy in his press conference later in the morning at the Empire State Building. "It's like being a stage manager," he said. "That person has to prepare the stage for the actors, and that's what I do."
Watson is a universally respected figure in golf, especially in Scotland because of his success in the British Open. His reputation as a master of links golf was cemented at Turnberry in 2009, when, just shy of his 60th birthday, he lost in heartbreaking fashion in a playoff against Stewart Cink.
Another interesting wrinkle to Watson's selection is his frosty history with Tiger Woods. Watson was critical of Woods during his infidelity scandal and has also chastised Woods for cursing and throwing clubs on the course. Woods immediately issued a statement in support of Watson, however.
"I'd like to congratulate Tom Watson on his selection as Ryder Cup captain," Woods said in the statement. "I think he's a really good choice. Tom knows what it takes to win, and that's our ultimate goal. I hope I have the privilege of joining him on the 2014 United States Team."
The U.S. squad lost the Ryder Cup at Medinah in Chicago this year when the Europeans made a dramatic Sunday comeback in singles. The European side is expected to name its captain in January.
Photo: Michel Euler/AP