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Monty gets nod as Ryder Cup captain
Colin Montgomerie takes over from Nick Faldo as Europe aim to grab back trophy.
Last Modified: 28 Jan 2009 14:42 GMT

Blue is the colour: Monty is desperate to lead Europe to victory in 2010 [GALLO/GETTY]

Europe have turned to Ryder Cup giant Colin Montgomerie in a bid to wrest back the trophy from the US in the next edition of the match in 2010.

The burly Scot had for some time been expected to take over as captain on home soil at Gleneagles in 2014.

But the European Tour's tournament committee on Wednesday appointed the eight-times European number one to replace Nick Faldo, who was in charge for the defeat in Valhalla, Kentucky, four months ago.

'Proud and honoured'

"I am proud and honoured to be selected as captain," Montgomerie said on the eve of the Dubai Desert Classic.

"It is a huge responsibility having lost the last one and it is important we do everything we can to claim it back.

"I'll do everything I can to reclaim the Ryder Cup."

Although he failed to qualify for the biennial match in 2008, the 45-year-old Montgomerie has a wealth of Ryder Cup experience.

In 2006 the Briton became the second European after Bernhard Langer to play in five winning teams.

Montgomerie is third on the list of Europe's leading points scorers but his appointment as skipper appears to have ended his hopes of breaking Faldo's record haul of 25.

Spearhead

Monty ponders his next move in the Pro-Am before the Desert Classic [GALLO/GETTY]
But with the future marketability of the tour, prize funds and sponsorships at stake, who better to act as Ryder Cup spearhead than Montgomerie?

He served as the team's talismanic leader when the Americans were vanquished in 1995, 1997, 2002, 2004 and 2006.

With the matches often finely poised going into the last day, it was Monty who invariably led the charge in the decisive singles encounters.

Victory over David Toms at the K Club in Ireland in 2006 meant Montgomerie remained unbeaten in eight Ryder Cup singles stretching back to his debut 15 years earlier.

To some, though, Montgomerie may appear an unlikely choice as a man to bring harmony and a winning mentality back to Europe.

Montgomerie has been at the centre of countless on-course controversies, with spectators, cameramen and reporters taking turns in his line of fire.

"He is their leader on the course," said 2002 US captain Curtis Strange.

"Certainly Seve (Ballesteros) was their leader for a long, long time and now, with Colin, it's the same.

"Every team needs a leader, not only by their play but by the way they handle themselves, by the respect of their team mates and peers."

Source:
Agencies
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