Box-office Tiger Woods in contention for Ryder Cup wildcard pick

He's been described as "priceless" as a Ryder Cup assistant captain, but Tiger Woods' runner-up finish in th...

Posted: Aug 13, 2018 8:51 PM
Updated: Aug 13, 2018 8:51 PM

He's been described as "priceless" as a Ryder Cup assistant captain, but Tiger Woods' runner-up finish in the US PGA has lifted him into serious contention to earn a wildcard spot as a player for September's match.

The 42-year-old ended the automatic qualifying race in 11th place, with the first eight after the US PGA guaranteeing a place in the side to face Europe in Paris.

Brooks Koepka

Continents and regions

Golf

Golf events

North America

PGA Tour

Ryder Cup

Sports and recreation

Sports events

Sports figures

Sports organizations and teams

The Americas

Tiger Woods

United States

Jim Furyk

Arts and entertainment

Business and industry sectors

Business, economy and trade

Media industry

Movie and video industry

Movie revenues

Movies

However Woods, already named as one of captain Jim Furyk's assistants, is a strong contender to be handed one of four captain's picks after his resurgence this season, culminating in sixth at the Open and Sunday's near miss behind Brooks Koepka at the US PGA.

At a news conference Monday, Furyk remained coy about the prospect of Woods getting a pick.

"He's playing very well, there's a lot of folks out there probably think he can help us," said Furyk, a nine-time Ryder Cup star.

"I realize Tiger Woods is a story, I realize he's playing very well and I'm excited to see that."

READ: Tiger Woods tale outshines Brooks Koepka's US PGA win

READ: Brooks Koepka holds off Tiger Woods to clinch US PGA

Koepka tops the US Ryder Cup rankings after adding the US PGA's Wanamaker Trophy to his second straight US Open title in June.

The 28-year-old will be joined in France by world No.3 Justin Thomas, top-ranked Dustin Johnson, Masters champion Patrick Reed, two-time Masters winner Bubba Watson, three-time major champion Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Players champion and former US Open winner Webb Simpson.

"This eight is exciting for any captain," said Furyk. "They bring a lot to the table, and they love to compete. That's what sticks out to me the most."

Furyk will add three wildcard picks in September 4 and make a fourth selection on September 10 to bring his team to the final 12 to defend the title it won at Hazeltine 2016.

'Big boost'

A 14-time major champion Woods made his Ryder Cup debut in 1997 and has played seven times in all but not since 2012. His record is played 33 matches, won 13, lost 17, halved three.

He was a vice captain for Davis Love two years ago and also reprized the assistant role at the Presidents Cup last year.

"He's priceless, to be honest with you," added Furyk, who admitted he would add another vice captain should Woods get a pick.

"He's been really a big help to our captains in both 2016 and 2017 from a strategy perspective, from personnel, personalities, and also really serving on the golf course. I mean, walking with players.

"I think it's been a big boost having the best player maybe to ever live following your group and being there for support."

He added: "Tiger serves that purpose as a vice captain or a player and looking forward to having his help."

In the build-up to the PGA, Woods said he was "trending" in terms of the wildcard debate after an impressive season given his recent history of four major back operations including spine fusion surgery last April.

After finishing two shots behind Koepka at Bellerive, he said: "I'm just very pleased at what I've done so far and now to be part of the Ryder Cup conversation, going from where I've come from to now in the last year, it's been pretty cool."

Woods is certainly box office. According to CBS Sports, ratings from Sunday' saw a 69 percent increase compared to Sunday at Quail Hollow last year.

Woods' fellow veteran Phil Mickelson is hoping for a wildcard that would give him a record 12th straight Ryder Cup appearance.

The 48-year-old left-hander was critical of Watson's captaincy at Gleneagles in 2014, sparking a revamp of the US system which led to the revival at Hazeltine.

READ: Francesco Molinari win Open as Tiger Woods falls short

READ: Tiger mania back in full swing at Carnoustie

'Going to be tough'

Furyk said he would be looking at a "body of work", who is "hot" and how potential picks might fit in with his other eight players in terms of pairings for the foursomes and fourball matches.

He also said an ability to cope with what is likely to be a boisterous European crowd would be key, alongside a suitability for Ryder Cup venue Le Golf National.

"The Europeans know this golf course very well, they like it, they a have a lot of experience there and they have the home crowd," added Furyk.

"I'm very excited about my team and I have a lot of confidence in my eight players but every one of them knows the task ahead of us and they know it's going to be tough."

The US last won the Ryder Cup on European soil in 1993 when Tom Watson's side prevailed at The Belfry in England.

Europe has won six of the last eight editions of the biennial matchplay competition.

The European qualifying race ends on September 2 after which captain Thomas Bjorn will add four wildcards.

Visit CNN.com/golf for more news, features and videos

The Ryder Cup takes place at Le Golf National outside Paris, France from September 28-30.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 113337

Reported Deaths: 3530
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion20936761
Lake10334319
Elkhart6438109
St. Joseph6226103
Allen6060200
Hamilton4761109
Vanderburgh349430
Hendricks2681122
Monroe251236
Tippecanoe231213
Johnson2279123
Clark215756
Porter209046
Cass19339
Delaware189561
Vigo178524
Madison161075
LaPorte138239
Floyd132161
Howard129063
Warrick122336
Kosciusko120617
Bartholomew115357
Marshall99424
Dubois95918
Boone95646
Hancock91443
Grant89733
Noble89432
Henry78125
Wayne74714
Jackson7429
Morgan70638
Shelby66629
Daviess65428
Dearborn63928
LaGrange63211
Clinton59513
Harrison56424
Putnam53810
Lawrence50628
Montgomery50521
Knox5039
Gibson4894
White48214
DeKalb46311
Decatur45739
Miami4303
Greene41935
Fayette41813
Jasper3862
Steuben3747
Scott35910
Sullivan33112
Jennings31212
Posey3090
Franklin30325
Clay2985
Orange28624
Ripley2828
Carroll27113
Wabash2628
Washington2611
Whitley2556
Starke2537
Adams2523
Wells2503
Jefferson2443
Fulton2352
Huntington2223
Spencer2223
Tipton22022
Perry21513
Randolph2097
Jay1750
Newton17211
Owen1671
Martin1640
Rush1534
Pike1411
Vermillion1260
Fountain1202
Pulaski1151
Blackford1133
Brown1033
Crawford1030
Parke961
Benton880
Ohio777
Union770
Switzerland690
Warren391
Unassigned0225

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 146753

Reported Deaths: 4687
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin26393606
Cuyahoga17262654
Hamilton12913312
Montgomery7623157
Lucas7205361
Butler5771106
Summit5202250
Marion307547
Mahoning3014280
Warren297848
Stark2790170
Pickaway264144
Lorain229386
Delaware218820
Fairfield205852
Columbiana192380
Licking188362
Trumbull1861131
Clark176439
Wood175272
Clermont166521
Lake159650
Medina144239
Greene139732
Miami139451
Allen139369
Portage111066
Mercer108517
Erie92645
Tuscarawas92020
Wayne91367
Ross86523
Richland81519
Madison79212
Darke78041
Belmont71427
Geauga70948
Hancock67610
Ashtabula65348
Athens6362
Lawrence62722
Shelby59710
Auglaize5769
Putnam56823
Sandusky55820
Huron5387
Union5092
Scioto4826
Ottawa46630
Seneca46414
Preble42515
Muskingum3862
Holmes3787
Jefferson3334
Henry30713
Logan3053
Champaign3003
Perry2929
Defiance28610
Clinton28413
Brown2832
Knox28215
Morrow2552
Washington25523
Hardin25213
Jackson2414
Fulton2391
Coshocton23211
Ashland2314
Crawford2286
Fayette2276
Highland2223
Williams2053
Wyandot20512
Gallia18812
Meigs17410
Pike1740
Hocking1619
Guernsey1608
Carroll1517
Adams1264
Van Wert1143
Monroe11018
Paulding1060
Harrison622
Morgan470
Vinton453
Noble270
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 59°
Angola
55° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 55°
Huntington
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 56°
Decatur
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 55°
Van Wert
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 55°
Sunny, Pleasant Friday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events