'I'm Good Enough To Be Out There' - McDowell Hopeful Of Ryder Cup Future After Merger

Graeme McDowell thinks he has a future in the Ryder Cup, but only beyond the 2023 tournament

Graeme McDowell at LIV Golf Orlando
Graeme McDowell thinks he has a future in the Ryder Cup
(Image credit: Getty Images)

LIV Golf player Graeme McDowell believes he has a future in the Ryder Cup despite admitting his form is not good enough to be considered for Luke Donald’s team in this year’s tournament at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club.

McDowell’s optimism over the potential for inclusion in future editions of the biennial tournament has been renewed following the merger that saw the PGA Tour and DP World Tour join forces with the Saudi Public Investment Fund that finances LIV Golf.

Nevertheless, the 2010 US Open champion, who will play for LIV Golf in this week’s tournament at Valderrama, admitted this year’s event will come too soon for him, although he could take part in the future. He said: “I’m not playing well enough to be considered for the 12 places.

“Do I believe I can play in the future? Yes, I believe I’m good enough to be out there. Would I like to be in Rome to help Luke Donald out? Of course I would love to be there, I love everything there is about the European Ryder Cup team.”

Aside from McDowell’s recent form, which finds him 38th in the LIV Golf standings, he also thinks it will be tricky for Donald to select its players for September’s tournament from a practical standpoint.

He continued: “There’s too much water under the bridge regarding the prep which Luke and his backroom staff have done and we wish them well. I fully expect that we won’t have anything to do with it, unfortunately.”

Despite that, the Northern Irishman, who has played for Team Europe four times, is convinced there are some LIV Golf players who could yet give Donald something to think about before he finalises his 12-man team. He said: “Do I think there are any players on LIV good enough to play on the European Ryder Cup team? Yes, I do think there are a couple of guys and we’ll have to see how it all shakes out.”

Graeme McDowell takes a shot during the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles

Graeme McDowell last played for Team Europe nine years ago

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In particular, McDowell sees July’s Open at Royal Liverpool as a potential shop window for a LIV Golf player to demonstrate his worth to the Team Europe captain, even if that won’t be either Lee Westwood or Ian Poulter, after they opted to skip final qualifying fo the Major. He said: “If someone goes and blows it up at The Open who is a European LIV player then that will throw the cat amongst the pigeons. “

In general, though, McDowell is in favour of the European Ryder Cup team comprising players who have been picked on merit rather than overlooking some because they play for LIV Golf. He explained: “I hope Europe wins the Ryder Cup. Aside from that, what that 12 looks like, we’ll see, but I think it should be the 12 best European players against the 12 best US players. In the end, it doesn’t matter where they play.”

Donald will select his six Captain’s Picks for the tournament after the conclusion of Ryder Cup qualifying on 3 September.

Mike Hall
News Writer

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.