Paul McGinley "Humbled" By Player Power
By Jake O'Reilly
16 January 2013 11:25
New Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley has described how he was overwhelmed and humbled by the reaction of the tour players who backed his bid to lead Team Europe at Gleneagles.
As the race for the 2014 Ryder Cup captaincy hotted up between bookie’s favourites McGinley and Scot Colin Montgomerie, the Irishman’s hopes were boosted by a number of players though the media and social networking site Twitter.
Speaking at his unveiling press conference, new captain McGinley said: "That meant a lot to me. I had such a strong hand with the players endorsing me, particularly Rory McIlroy, being as strong as he was, as I say, it's a very humbling thing when the new star of world golf is coming out in your favour. You don't need to say anything when he's saying the words he's saying.
“The crème de la crème was the endorsement of the players. Ian Poulter was extremely strong for me, as well as Rory, and all of the guys who lined up and when I had that, that's when I felt, you know what, I don't need to speak myself.
“It's very humbling to be honest, and not just Rory, Ian Poulter, Luke Donald, Justin Rose, keep going down the line as far as you want to go. So many players came out totally unprompted on my side, and that's a very humbling place to be for a professional golfer when your peers think that much of you."
On his relationship with such stars, McGinley added: “I think there's a couple of good things happened for me in terms of getting this role, and one of them was the fact that Rory and Graeme McDowell played in the first Seve Trophy, which was my first captaincy as well then, too. Rory was not the star then that he is now. I think it might have been his second year on Tour, maybe his third.
"I had the opportunity of captaining him, and I knew it was a very weakened team compared to how strong the Europeans were if you compared it to world rankings. But we played the role of underdog there extremely well, and Rory and Graeme were huge for me that week.
“I really enjoyed playing with them, and I think they enjoyed it as well, too. So I think I was fortunate that I had that situation where Rory had played underneath me and that's why I think he spoke with such authority on the subject."