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Sam Torrance and Des Smyth named Ryder vice-captains

Updated: Thursday, 06 Mar 2014 13:24 | Comments

Paul McGinley (centre) said Des Smyth (left) and Sam Torrance were the first two people he had in mind for the roles
Paul McGinley (centre) said Des Smyth (left) and Sam Torrance were the first two people he had in mind for the roles

Paul McGinley has announced Sam Torrance and Des Smyth as his first two vice-captains for this year's Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.

The Ryder Cup will take place in September, and will be looking to retain the trophy and win a hat-trick of wins following the 2012 ‘Miracle of Medinah’, when Jose Maria Olazabal’s team won 14.5-13.5.

Torrance, 60, led the European team to victory at The Belfry in 2002, 17 years after he holed the winning putt at the same venue.

Irishman Smyth, 61, featured in the Ryder Cup as a player in 1979 and 1981. He was a vice-captain in 2006. 

"They are two guys that I greatly admire both personally and professionally" - Paul McGinley

"I am delighted to officially unveil Des and Sam as two of my vice captains for the Ryder Cup,” McGinley said.

"As well as being good friends, they are two guys that I greatly admire both personally and professionally and I know they will be vital assets to me in Scotland in September.

"They were the first two people I had in mind for this role when I was appointed captain and, since then, I have talked to a lot of the experienced European players about having them as part of the team and, to a man, they have been very supportive of the idea.

"Des took me under his wing when I was a young rookie on Tour and he gave me tremendous advice, which was not only valuable then but has continued to ring true for me throughout my professional career.

"His views and ideas about the Ryder Cup particularly have consistently proved to be spot on and I really enjoyed working with him as a vice captain in 2006 when I was a player.

"Sam is a man who has probably had the most influence on me in terms of playing team golf in my career.

"Being my first captain in the Ryder Cup in 2002, I learned a huge amount from him and have continued to do so over the years.

"Since those early days, our relationship has grown to see us become firm friends and, living not far apart, we see a lot of each other socially as well."

US skipper Tom Watson has already appointed four-times major winner Ray Floyd and double US Open champion Andy North as his vice-captains.
              
Gleneagles will be the venue when holders Europe take on the US from Sept. 26-28.
              
The Americans have not won the trophy in Europe since 1993, when Watson was captain for the first time.   

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