'Ludvig Was A Simple Pick' - Aberg Backed To Be 'A Great Fit' For Ryder Cup Side

Former captain Padraig Harrington says Ludvig Aberg was a "simple pick" for Luke Donald to make, while Shane Lowry thinks he'll be a "great fit" for the Ryder Cup side

Ludvig Aberg and Padraig Harrington
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ludvig Aberg's stellar form this summer made him a "simple pick" for Luke Donald in the end, according to the last Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington.

Harrington knows exactly what it's like to have to select wildcards for the Ryder Cup, but says he doesn't think there was any question about the young Swede getting in.

It's a sentiment echoed by Shane Lowry, who also got a captain's pick, and who says Aberg will be a "great fit" for the team when they line up together in Rome.

Harrington says the way Aberg played in the last few weeks - heading over to Europe to win the Omega European Masters - just helped to settle Donald's mind that he was the right man to pick.

"I think Ludvig was a simple pick at the end," said Harrington. "Like I don't think it was in any question at the very end.

"I think two weeks prior, it would have been a big pick. It would have been a pick based on stats rather than necessary results, but his results have been fantastic the last two weeks, and that's actually why you have a closing date. You're trying to get current form into your team, and Ludvig has proved it. He's hit the ground running.

"The way he delivered the last two weeks, I'm sure he went over - it would be hard to believe that there was a European player that wouldn't have supported the pick in the end, whereas two weeks previously, they would have all been 'whoa', but he played great. So fully deserved it."

Harrington believes Europe are stronger than the team he had two years ago, with the strength in depth helping with pairings selections - as he doesn't want even Europe's best player having to play in every session.

"Looking forward to seeing him in the Ryder Cup, too. Again, I think we've got a good strong team," he added.

"One of the most important things with that team is you never want to play anybody - relying on guys to play four times, the chance of winning your singles is greatly diminished, and you're the best player, obviously, if you've played four times.

"We need a strong pool of players so that some of the very top players can be rested for the singles. I think that's the most important thing is that all the players play well.

"We have the best players at the top for sure, but we need all of them to play well so the best players can sit out at least one match."

He'll fit in nicely - Lowry

Shane Lowry takes a shot at the 2023 Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Aberg has never even teed it up in a Major yet, with his rise being so meteoric, but Lowry thinks he has all the tools to be able to star in the Ryder Cup.

"I think he's playing with a lot of confidence at the minute, so I think he'll be okay," said Lowry. "I think Ludvig - I've not played with him or seen him shots, and obviously I watched last weekend. 

"I think Ludvig is probably going to play in the next six or seven Ryder Cups, so this is a good one to start with in Rome with a very strong team. I think he'll fit into the team nicely.

"He drives the ball incredibly well, which is what you need around that golf course, and I think he's a great fit for the team.

"Look, he's never played a Major, but he's played, like you said, a lot of PGA Tour events and never missed a cut, not even close to missing a cut. 

"He's been very solid since he turned pro, and statistically he's one of the best players on the European side at the minute. I don't see any reason for him not to pick him."

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.