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Luke Donald has refused to rule out staying on as Ryder Cup captain after masterminding Europe’s 16.5-11.5 win over the USA in Rome.

Donald, appointed a little over a year ago following LIV defector Henrik Stenson’s sacking, has been widely lauded for his calm and measured leadership.

The Englishman’s success at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, not to mention a lack of obvious candidates to replace him, have made him the early frontrunner to lead Europe into the 2025 match at Bethpage.

Cries of “two more years” also rang out around Marco Simone long after play had concluded on Sunday night – a sure sign that fans would like to see him stay on, too.

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However, the 45-year-old was coy when the prospect came up during Team Europe’s press conference last night.

“I want to enjoy this moment right now with these guys,” said Donald. “I haven’t been asked [to stay on].”

No European captain has served consecutive terms since Bernard Gallacher in the mid-1990s but Donald’s players would clearly be delighted to see him break that mould.

“I think everyone sitting here would be very happy to have him again,” said Rory McIlroy. “Quiet confidence is what Luke has been this week.

“He doesn’t have to say many words. The words that he does say are impactful and he’s been amazing this week.”

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Jon Rahm added: “Luke has done an unbelievable job and would be difficult to live up to. He’s set the bar so high.”

“From when this whole process started, he’s been so, so good,” said Tommy Fleetwood. “The way he’s been this week has been phenomenal. We just look at Luke on another level.”

Donald, however, was keen for the focus to be on his players and not him.

“I’m just so happy for these 12 guys,” he said. “They gave everything this week. They were a pleasure to be around. They made my life very easy and they played like superstars.

“Not many people gave us a chance, I don’t think, especially two years ago. Yeah, well, we proved them wrong.”

author headshot

Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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