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The inclusion of Justin Thomas in the US Ryder Cup team has not gone down well with everyone.

Thomas was awarded with a show of faith by Zach Johnson with one of six captain’s picks to complete the American team to take on the Europeans just outside Rome.

The former world No.1’s wildcard ends months of speculation over his candidacy, with uncertainty over whether experience and popularity would trump form in Johnson’s side.

• The big names Johnson snubbed for the Ryder Cup 

• Jon Rahm’s live reaction to Thomas Ryder Cup pick

But Johnson could not have been more effusive in his praise of Thomas when confirming his fellow two-time major champion in his 12-man line-up for Marco Simone.

“He has without question been the heart and soul of Team USA, Ryder Cups, our emotional leader, I would say, and I don’t think he would argue with that,” the US skipper said. “He just leads by example. Overall, a fantastic Ryder Cup record.

“His passion for the Ryder Cup is very evident. He would say it himself. He has said it himself. In my mind, he was born for this, and there is – you just don’t leave JT at home.”

Thomas, who boasts a formidable US team competitions record but is woefully short on form, was selected at the expense of the likes of Keegan Bradley and Cameron Young.

He has fallen outside the world’s top 25, missed five cuts in his last eight starts and has shot two rounds in the 80s in his last two majors.

But that has not deterred Johnson from picking him, which is much to the frustration of former PGA Tour winner Mark Lye.

• Zach Johnson reveals six captain’s picks 

• Zach Johnson: Why I didn’t call LIV golfers

Lye, an American pro who won the 1983 Bank of Boston Classic, was adamant that Thomas did not deserve his place.

Responding to Dan Rapaport’s tweet that his inclusion was the right call, Lye replied: “I DO NOT understand why JT is on this team…he’s a total liability, as has NOT earned a spot in any way, shape, or form.”

Lye, 70, added. “There’s no way you can look at his results the last 12 months and pick him. ‘But look at his Ryder cup record!’ Yes, he was playing great going into those.”

Thomas has a 6-2-1 record in his two Ryder Cup starts and his 16-5-3 for Team USA when combining the Presidents Cup.

Alongside Thomas, Johnson named Brooks Koepka, Jordan Spieth, Collin Morikawa, Rickie Fowler and Sam Burns as wildcard picks during Tuesday’s announcement.

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