Is Luke Donald bitter over initial Ryder Cup skipper rejection? Let him tell you

Luke Donald has offered some thoughts on how he became the European Ryder Cup captain after LIV Golf's Henrik Stenson was stripped of the role.

Is Luke Donald bitter over initial Ryder Cup skipper rejection? Let him tell you
Is Luke Donald bitter over initial Ryder Cup skipper rejection? Let him…

Luke Donald took on the European Ryder Cup captaincy in utterly bizarre circumstances. 

He was named as the skipper to lead Europe in the 44th edition of the contest after Henrik Stenson was removed from the position last July. 

Stenson was stripped of the role because he decided to compete in lucrative LIV Golf events. 

The Swede faced an onslaught of criticism from fellow tour pros, fans and pundits. 

Padraig Harrington went as far as saying Stenson did something he 'promised he wouldn't do'. 

There was also speculation Stenson used the captaincy as leverage to increase his fee with the Saudi-backed tour. He has denied doing that

Donald joked he 'wouldn't do a Henrik' when he was given the honour. 

But there is no denying that the Englishman and former World No. 1 wanted the job and, perhaps, would have been a bit miffed he was overlooked. 

Along with Donald and Stenson, Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell and Paul Lawrie were in the frame for the job.  

Asked about the rejection by Telegraph Sport, Donald said: "It's not my style to go down that path."

So was he bitter? He explained:

"I was disappointed, I then got given the second opportunity and I planned to make the most of it. When I got the call, there's a mixture of excitement and 'wow, can I do this? Am I ready? Can I suddenly be the captain at this age? I was 44.'"

For his part Stenson, initially, was furious with the decision to strip him of the honour. He even threatened legal action

The 2016 Open champion won his maiden LIV Golf event, scooping $4m on top of what was reported to be a $50m signing-on fee, then blasted Ryder Cup Europe HQ. 

"I think we can all agree I played like a captain," he said after his win. 

Since then things have settled down somewhat in the golf world although there is still a whiff of volatility. 

In his most recent comments, Stenson has said he is not 'dwelling' on what has transpired. 

"I mean, things could have worked out differently," Stenson said when asked about the 6 June peace agreement between the PGA Tour, LIV Golf and the PIF of Saudi Arabia. 

"I think it's good for the game where we're at at the moment when things have calmed down a little bit and we can start looking ahead instead, and hopefully there will be a better future in that sense.

"We'll see where it takes us. We wish the guys all the best at this point, and hopefully we can all come together going forward."

Donald's Europe take on Team USA in the Ryder Cup over 29 September to 1 October. 

Stay tuned to GolfMagic for all the latest news, updates and analysis from the contest. 

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