As expected, Henrik Stenson has been stripped of his Ryder Cup captaincy over his expected move to the controversial Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series.
Henrik Stenson was due to captain the European team at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome in 2023, with the aim of winning back the title they lost last year to the USA.
Henrik Stenson Loses Captaincy
Ryder Cup Europe released a statement earlier today confirming the news.
Ryder Cup Europe today confirms that Henrik Stenson’s tenure as Captain of Team Europe for the 2023 Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome, Italy from September 25 – October 1, 2023, has been brought to an end with immediate effect.
In light of decisions made by Henrik in relation to his personal circumstances, it has become clear that he will not be able to fulfil certain contractual obligations to Ryder Cup Europe that he had committed to prior to his announcement as Captain on Tuesday March 15, 2022, and it is therefore not possible for him to continue in the role of Captain.
Confirmation of the new 2023 European Ryder Cup Captain will be made in due course. Ryder Cup Europe will be making no further comment on any aspect of the process until that time.
It is a serious blow to the European team and to Stenson's Ryder Cup reputation. The Swede played in five editions of the event between 2006 and 2018, with a respectable winning percentage of 57.89.
Many European Ryder Cup legends who would have been vying for captaincy will also be unavailable due to their involvement with the LIV Golf Tour. Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Paul Casey, Graeme McDowell, and Martin Kaymer, were all swayed by the riches on offer with LIV.
Luke Donald would seem like the obvious choice to replace Henrik Stenson as captain, having played in four Ryder Cups and appearing as a vice captain in recent editions.
Henrik Stenson's compatriot Robert Karlsson may also be an option, while one of the recent captains such as Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, or Pádraig Harrington could potentially repeat.