Rickie Fowler setting sights on Ryder Cup: "They're very special weeks"

Rickie Fowler's next goal is making the Ryder Cup team.

Lara Kuipers's picture
Mon, 3 Jul 2023
Rickie Fowler setting sights on Ryder Cup: "They're very special weeks"

Rickie Fowler may have just finally returned to the winner's circle in over four years, but the 34-year-old already has his sights set on a new goal: making the Ryder Cup team.

The fan-favourite stuck his 180-yard approach to 12 feet on Sunday, and then sunk that putt for birdie to win the three-man playoff at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

It marked Fowler's first win in over four years, his last one coming at the Phoenix Open all the way back in February 2019.

The victory in Detroit on Sunday marked the long-awaited return of the American who had struggled all the way out of the world's top 100 at his lowest point over the past few years.

During the 2022 US Open, Fowler was on stand-by as the first alternate, but that call never came.

Fast forward to just over a year later, and he's back in the winner's circle with his sixth career PGA Tour victory.

But it didn't exactly come out of nowhere. In Fowler's own words from earlier in the week, he's been "knocking at that door."

Heading into the week at Detroit Golf Club, he already had seven top-10 finishes including a runner-up.

He finished tied for fifth at the 2023 US Open after leading for the much of the tournament, and tied for 13th at the Travelers Championship a week later where he nearly shot 59 on the Saturday.

And now that he's finally won a PGA Tour event again, Fowler has his sights set on a new goal: the Ryder Cup.

"Well, this was definitely one of the main goals this year was to win," Fowler told reporters Sunday.

"Outside of that was obviously playing well and doing what I've been doing to make it to the TOUR Championship, and kind of the -- one of the end goals was to be a part of the Ryder Cup team and that's still what we're focusing on right now. Been a part of a handful and that's -- they're very special weeks, so that's where I have kind of my eyes."

This year's Ryder Cup is being hosted in Rome, Italy at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in late September. 

Zach Johnson is the US captain while Luke Donald is set to the lead the Europeans.

Fowler's currently ranked No. 16 in the US rankings, 10 spots out of an automatic qualifying spot. Though he could be on Johnson's radar for one of his picks.

He certainly has the veteran experience, having been a part of four Ryder Cups in the past and three more Presidents Cup teams.

Another name swirling as a possible candidate - if Johnson can and does pick LIV Golf players - is Talor Gooch, who captured his third LIV title this past week in Spain.

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