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Darren Clarke pulls out of race to become the 2014 Ryder Cup captain

Updated: Tuesday, 15 Jan 2013 15:30 | Comments

Darren Clarke is likely to be a frontrunner for the Ryder Cup captaincy in 2016
Darren Clarke is likely to be a frontrunner for the Ryder Cup captaincy in 2016

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Darren Clarke has officially pulled out of the race to succeed Spaniard Jose Maria Olazabal as Europe's Ryder Cup captain.

The former Open champion said: "I have been to see (Players Committee chairman) Thomas Bjorn and formally informed him I do not want to be considered for the Ryder Cup captaincy in 2014."

"It was not a spur of the moment decision. I have been agonising over what to do since I showed a few glimpses of my old form in Thailand and Australia at the end of last year."

"I do not want to be considered for the Ryder Cup captaincy in 2014" - Darren Clarke

Clarke's withdrawal leaves the way clear for a two-horse race between former skipper Colin Montgomerie and Ireland's Paul McGinley.

The Players Committee meet in Abu Dhabi later on Tuesday and are expected to announce the new Ryder Cup captain.

Clarke, the 2011 Open champion, was also a front-runner for the job until his odds lengthened when he hinted last week he wanted another shot at playing in the team.

Olazabal led Europe to a remarkable comeback victory over the United States at the 2012 Ryder Cup in Illinois.

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