It may be 15 months away but speculation is already rife as to who will be on the respective Ryder Cup teams for the 2020 match at Whistling Straits.
Qualification for Jim Furyk’s American side is already underway, with the process to make the European team captained by Padraig Harrington set to get underway at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth in September.
With a few exceptions, it’s almost impossible to predict who’ll be in those 12-man line-ups but there’s one man Harrington fully expects to skipper – and his identity might surprise you considering he only turned pro a few days ago.
The man in question? Norwegian wonderkid Viktor Hovland.
The 21-year-old joined the paid ranks last Monday after finishing in a tie for 12th at the US Open. The reigning US Amateur champ also finished low amateur at the Masters in April, after which he climbed to the top of the World Amateur Golf Ranking.
No doubt, he’s an exciting prospect, and his recent exploits have caught the eye of Harrington.
Speaking Sirius XM PGA Tour radio yesterday, the Irishman called Hovland the “most interesting thing to come out of the US Open”.
“At the end of the day, I want to ask myself, ‘Is he possibly going to be in my team next year?’" he added.
“Every Ryder Cup throws up two or three rookies. There’s no way for me to predict all the names that would be in there, but certainly Viktor Hovland showed his colours last week. I would hope that he would take European membership and make an effort to make the team because, if he’s as good as he looks, he’ll probably be in that team.”
His pro career is already off to the perfect start. He made the cut on the number for this week’s Travelers Championship.