Luke Donald confirmed as European Ryder Cup captain for 2023

Luke Donald replaces Henrik Stenson as 2023 European Ryder Cup captain for Rome. 

Andy Roberts's picture
Mon, 1 Aug 2022
Luke Donald confirmed as European Ryder Cup captain for 2023

Luke Donald has officially been confirmed as 2023 European Ryder Cup captain, replacing Henrik Stenson who was sacked from the position due to his involvement with LIV Golf.

Donald, 44, now becomes the first English captain of the European Ryder Cup captain since Sir Nick Faldo in 2008. 

The 2023 Ryder Cup will be staged at Marco Simone Golf Club in Rome from September 29 to October 1. 

Related: Luke Donald takes a pop at Henrik Stenson over Ryder Cup captaincy

Donald has played in four Ryder Cups and been on the winning side every time.

He took 10.5 points from a possible 15 during his Ryder Cup playing career. 

Donald also served as a vice-captain to Thomas Bjorn at Le Golf National and Padraig Harrington at Whistling Straits. 

United States are the defending champions having ran out record 19-9 winners over Europe at Whistling Straits. 

Zach Johnson, 46, is the captain of the United States team. 

Related: Henrik Stenson fires shot at European Ryder Cup team after LIV Golf debut win



"I am incredibly proud to be named European Ryder Cup Captain for 2023," said Donald.

"It is truly one of the greatest honours that can be bestowed upon a golfer, to lead a team of your peers and be an ambassador for an entire continent. 

"I feel extremely privileged to have been given that responsibility and it is a responsibility I do not take lightly. 

"Some of my best experiences in golf have been in the Ryder Cup and I would not swap those for anything. It is an event like no other and I cannot wait to create more special memories in Italy next year.

"I love everything the Ryder Cup embodies, from the camaraderie and companionship of being part of a team, to the history of the contest, but most of all playing for something bigger than yourself. 

"Rome will be a fantastic host city, and I have always enjoyed spending time there. It is a city rich in history and hopefully we can create some of our own in 14 months’ time."

Donald has wasted little time in ensuring continuity in the key backroom area of Team Europe, confirming that both existing Vice Captains – Thomas Bjørn and Edoardo Molinari – will continue in their respective positions.

"In my opinion, it was essential that Thomas and Edoardo remained part of the team," said Donald.

"They were the first two calls I made once I got the nod to be Captain and I’m delighted that they are fully on-board.

"Nobody needs any explanation of how important Thomas is to the Ryder Cup – one glance at the history books will show you that. He has lived and breathed European golf for the past 30 years and having his know-how behind me, not least as a winning Captain, will be vital.

"Furthermore, Edoardo has blazed an impressive trail for himself in the world of stats and his knowledge in this area with the players who will be on the team, in addition to extra-special Italian element he will bring to the entire occasion, is an extra bonus for Team Europe."

Stenson was previously stripped of the captaincy after he signed a deal in the region of $50 million to play in the Saudi-funded LIV Golf Invitational Series.

He said that he disagreed with the decision to be sacked as European Ryder Cup captain. 

Stenson then went and won on his LIV Golf Bedminster debut, finishing two shots clear of Dustin Johnson and Matt Wolff on 11-under par. 

He won $4.375 million for winning the individual tournament and also finishing second in the team event with his Majesticks team. 

As well as Stenson, former Ryder Cup Europe stalwarts Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Sergio Garcia, Graeme McDowell, Paul Casey and Martin Kaymer have also joined LIV Golf. 

Those players were the subject of fines and suspensions by the PGA Tour and DP World Tour. 

Some players have resigned their memberships from the established tours to avoid litigation, while others appear ready for a showdown in the courts. 

Golfers who have defected to LIV Golf could now become ineligible to ever compete in Ryder Cup matches, but golf's governing bodies are still working out what to do on that front. 

A decision on Ryder Cup eligibility is expected to be confirmed soon. 

Next Page: New footage emerges of Phil Mickelson being distracted by comedy duo at LIV Golf Bedminster