Luke Donald: "Let's not forget LIV Golf players can still play on my team"

Luke Donald responds to 'gentlemen's agreement' idea for LIV Golf players at Ryder Cup. 

Andy Roberts's picture
Tue, 16 May 2023
Luke Donald: "Let's not forget LIV Golf players can still play on my team"

European Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald has affirmed the door is still very much for LIV Golf players to make his team this September. 

Donald, speaking ahead of this week's US PGA Championship, was quizzed by reporters at Oak Hill as to whether he would consider some sort of 'gentlemen's agreement' with fellow US Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson when it comes to making his six captain's picks for Rome.

As it stands, LIV Golf players can still play their way into Ryder Cup teams providing they are members of their respective tours on the DP World Tour and PGA Tour.  

Although the task is proving tougher the longer LIV Golf goes without accumulating any world ranking points. 

Their best hope is to now play well and rely on a captain's pick. Both Donald and Johnson will get six each. 

Related: Former Ryder Cup captain reveals idea 'being floated in the corridors of power'

Donald said he has not spoken to Johnson about any such 'gentlemen's agreement', but that he does remain open for LIV Golf players competing in his European Ryder Cup team providing they remain DP World Tour members. 

Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Sergio Garcia, Richard Bland and Henrik Stenson all terminated their DP World Tour memberships this month. meaning they are ineligible to play in or captain a European Ryder Cup side in the future. 

Current LIV Golf players that still have an outside chance of making Donald's team this year include the likes of Thomas Pieters, Sam Horsfield, Laurie Canter, Graeme McDowell, Martin Kaymer and Paul Casey. 

Donald said: 

"As I said a couple weeks ago, yeah, it's a shame that there were some resignations. A lot of these guys have built their legacy around DP World Tour members and their participation and everything with the Ryder Cup. But ultimately that was their decision, and unfortunately they're off the table now for selection purposes for myself.
"As I said, I've always tried to concentrate on looking at all the players that week in, week out are committed to try and make that Ryder Cup, and that hasn't changed. My situation is what it is. I've got to always take what I have in front of me and kind of go forward. I'm still excited about all the players we have on offer, both rookies and established players, and I think our team will be very good.
"I think in terms of what Zach is doing and his options, I think that's kind of his call. Whether LIV players play on his team, again, I haven't really talked to him much about it as a captains' agreement, as you said.
"And let's not forget there's still LIV players that can still play on my team. They're still eligible if they're members of the Tour and were born in Europe. That is still a possibility for some guys."

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