Ryder Cup 2018: Tiger Woods named vice-captain but targeting playing role in Paris

Golf
Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods has been named as Ryder Cup vice-captain alongside Steve Stricker, but will Woods be taking his clubs to Paris this autumn?

Woods was a vice-captain for Team USA’s emphatic win at Hazeltine last time out, but having started his return from a back injury he has made no secret of his desire to be playing at Le Golf National.

The 14-time major winner has made seven Ryder Cup appearances, his last coming in 2012 during Europe’s epic comeback victory at Medinah, and although happy to be a vice-captain he has set his sights on a playing role this September.

"I am thrilled to once again serve as a Ryder Cup vice-captain and I thank Jim for his confidence, friendship and support," said Woods, who is 2/1 with Sky Bet to be playing in the Ryder Cup.

"My goal is to make the team, but whatever happens over the course of this season, I will continue to do what I can to help us keep the cup. I'm excited about the challenge ahead."

Woods has previously said that he would be happy to have a combined playing and vice-captain role, but Furyk is keen to see a lot more of Woods, who is ranked 104th in the Ryder Cup standings, before making that call.

"I'd like to do what's best for Tiger," Furyk said. "If he could be valuable as a player, I'm sure we would want him playing on this team but I'm anxious to see how he plays this year."

Furyk’s USA take on Thomas Bjorn’s Europe in Paris in September with the Americans looking to win on European soil for the first time since the Belfry in 1993.

They’re favourites to go back across the Atlantic with the trophy still in their possession after an emphatic victory last time out, and Furky is delighted to have Stricker and Woods, in any capacity, as part of his unit.

"To win in Paris will be a great challenge, and to have Steve and Tiger share in the journey is important for me and for American golf," Furyk added.

"The deep appreciation they both have for competition, the concept of team, and the Ryder Cup is infectious. Their knowledge and experience will be an invaluable resource in our effort to retain the Ryder Cup."

Woods has a mixed record in the Ryder Cup to say the least – winning just 13 of 33 matches overall, but having a 4-1-2 record in singles matches.

42-year-old Woods is looking to be among the young guns of the USA team and he is stepping up his comeback with back-to-back tournaments as he plays in the Honda Classic after missing the cut at Riviera last week.

Woods is still easing his way back into competitive golf and sits down at 544 in the world rankings, and he'll need to string together a full summer schedule to prove he is ready for the stresses and strains of the Ryder Cup.

A few decent results but a failure to qualify automatically will give Furyk a real selection headache with Woods so eager to play in the event again.

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