Ryder Cup postponed until 2021 due to COVID-19
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Steve Stricker has announced his six wildcard picks to complete Team USA Ryder Cup team to take on Europe, however three-time US player Patrick Reed was not one of them.
Stricker confirmed that Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Tony Finau, Harris English, Daniel Berger and Scottie Scheffler would be the six men joining him in Wisconsin in two weeks’ time, as the American’s looked to regain the title they last won in 2016.
As a result, this means Reed will miss out on a fourth successive appearance, despite announcing himself as one of America’s fiercest matchplay players in recent years.
The captain announced his wildcard choices during a press conference this afternoon, revealing he felt the six chosen were a ‘great fit’ for the Wisconsin course.
Discussing his six selections, Stricker said: “We are super-excited about these six individuals. I talked to each and every one of them a couple of days ago and they are extremely excited and happy and fired up to be part of this team.
“All a great fit for Whistling Straits. They all can’t wait to do one thing and that’s to bring the cup back where it belongs.”
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The six captain picks will join the already qualified Colin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Patrick Cantlay to form the 12-man squad.
Three names whose wildcard selection came as no surprise were those of Spieth, Schauffele and Finau, as the trio found themselves just outside automatic qualification, whilst also boding past Ryder Cup experience.
The trio have all enjoyed impressive 2021 campaigns, and found themselves in the winners’ circle throughout the season.
Spieth’s best showing came in April, after winning the Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio by two shots, whilst Schauffele secured arguably one of the biggest victories of his career by being crowned Olympic champion at the Tokyo 2020 golf event last month.
As for Finau, he finally broke his five-year wait for a second PGA Tour title, after clinching the opening FedEx Cup play-off event of the season at the Northern Trust, following a one-hole shootout victory over Cameron Smith.
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As well as three men with experience, Stricker has also looked to implement some new blood into the American team, with English, Berger and Scheffler all heading to Whistling Straits as rookies.
Like Spieth, Schauffele and Finau, English heads into the team event in hot form, as he ended the 2021 campaign 11th in the world rankings, following two PGA Tour victories and eight top-1- victories.
Berger’s and Scheffler’s selection though may have come as a surprise to many with the likes of Reed and Kevin Na being tipped for a place.
However, both youngsters have also found themselves at the right end of the leaderboard throughout the season, with one win and 16 top 10s accumulated between them.
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