Pros advice

Torrance and Smyth first vice-captains named for Ryder Cup

European captain Paul McGinley has named Sam Torrance and Des Smyth as his first two vice-captains for this September’s Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.

McGinley enjoyed playing previously under Torrance and holed the winning putt at The Belfry back in 2002. Smyth was vice-captain under Ian Woosnam in which Europe achieved a record-equaling victory at the K Club in 2006.

However, there are still a further two vice-captains to be chosen later in the year and McGinley will wait to see how well his 12-man team shapes up before making the final announcements.

McGinley said: “I am delighted to officially unveil Des and Sam as two of my vice captains for the Ryder Cup.

“As well as being good friends, they are two guys that I greatly admire both personally and professionally and I know they will be vital assets to me in Scotland in September.

“They were the first two people I had in mind for this role when I was appointed captain and, since then, I have talked to a lot of the experienced European players about having them as part of the team and, to a man, they have been very supportive of the idea.”

“Des took me under his wing when I was a young rookie on Tour and he gave me tremendous advice which was not only valuable then but has continued to ring true for me throughout my professional career.”

“His views and ideas about the Ryder Cup particularly have consistently proved to be spot on and I really enjoyed working with him as a vice captain in 2006 when I was a player.

He added: “Sam is a man who has probably had the most influence on me in terms of playing team golf in my career.”

“Being my first captain in the Ryder Cup in 2002, I learned a huge amount from him and have continued to do so over the years.”

“Since those early days, our relationship has grown to see us become firm friends and, living not far apart, we see a lot of each other socially as well.”