I think it is only fair that I cover the Team USA final picks for the upcoming President’s Cup. I talked about Ernie Els Canadian pick, but this brilliant move is overshadowed in the media by Tiger Woods’ pick of himself! Yup, he will be a playing captain. This move is not unprecedented as he will join Hale Irwin (1994) as the only playing captains in the competition’s history. So, I wonder if this is a good choice?
Tiger chooses include reigning U.S. Open champion Gary Woodland, Tony Finau and past Master’s champion Patrick Reed as discretionary choices. The four picks will join Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Xander Schauffele, Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Cantlay, Webb Simpson and Matt Kuchar when the U.S. meets the Internationals December at the Royal Melbourne.
The Internationals captain, Ernie Els, used his discretionary picks in Jason Day, Adam Hadwin, Sungjae Im and Joaquin Niemann. They join Hideki Matsuyama, Adam Scott, Louis Oosthuizen, Marc Leishman, Abraham Ancer, Haotong Li, Cameron Smith and C.T. Pan.
If you look purely at the star-studded USA Team, the conclusion of the President’s Cup is but determined. And Woods’ choice of himself is purely for the entertainment value. He is still the biggest draw in golf and him playing will definitely sell more tickets; so why did he pick himself.
” Really, how could Woods have not taken himself? He won the Masters in April and seemed to be a lock to make the team as one of the top 8 in the points race. But a painful, dismal summer caused by a bum left knee dropped him in the standings – he finished 13th. But Woods became an obvious selection when the No. 7-ranked player in the Official World Golf Ranking won his record-tying 82nd PGA Tour title at the Zozo Championship in October.” (USA Today) I included the USA Today’s synopsis because it sums up why he actually makes a strong choice as a player for this years team.
The only challenge I have is being a playing Captain. I have played this role in the past in other sports and found the dual-hatted position very challenging. How can he support the players when he is on the course playing. Maybe with the power of his team, the captain’s position is not as important as in years past. I guess we will have to see how things unfold.
The Presidents Cup teams are set and as I said before, I am rooting for Team International all the way! But, I seem to be in the minority!
Where do you stand?
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!