Ian Poulter and Nicolas Colsaerts get wild-card picks for Ryder Cup team
England's Ian Poulter and Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium were named by captain Jose Maria Olazabal yesterday as Europe's two wild-card picks for next month's Ryder Cup.
World No 26 Poulter and 35th-ranked Colsaerts join 10 automatic selections in the 12-man team for holders Europe for the September 28-30 match against the US in Illinois.
"Every one of you pretty much guessed Ian was going to be there. That was not a difficult pick because he has a great Ryder Cup record and he's playing well," Olazabal said.
"He had some issues earlier this season when he got ill and couldn't play as much as he wanted. But his attitude and his spirit in the Ryder Cup have always been great and he is a player that likes to be in that environment. It gets the best out of him."
The 29-year-old Colsaerts, one of the longest hitters on the tour, will become the first Belgian to play in the Ryder Cup.
"Nicolas is going to be the only rookie in an experienced team, but his match-play record is very good - he won the World Match Play Championship in Spain this year," Olazabal said.
"Nicolas has shown a lot of heart and a lot of character, and I think he has got the game and the desire to do well."
There was no place in the team for triple-major winner Padraig Harrington of Ireland, who failed to qualify for this year's World Golf Championship tournaments, the events that are one rung down from the four majors.
Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland), Justin Rose (England), Graeme McDowell (Northern Ireland), Paul Lawrie (Scotland), Francesco Molinari (Italy), Luke Donald (England), Lee Westwood (England), Sergio Garcia (Spain), Peter Hanson (Sweden), Martin Kaymer (Germany), Ian Poulter (England), Nicolas Colsaerts (Belgium)