Going into the last week before he finalizes his team, U.S. Ryder Cup captian Paul Azinger told Golf World on Monday that he has two players he's "dead-solid on," and the list for the next two picks extends well down the points standings which ended at the PGA Championship.
Azinger didn't identify the players, and said he has not told them either, in hopes to stir some movement in what has been a cold month for American golf. Kenny Perry's victory in the U.S. Bank Champinship was the last by a member of the American Ryder Cup team.
While Zinger's system did put winners on the team--all but Jim Furyk and Ben Curtis have won PGA Tour events in 2008--it has not generated hot play leading into the competition, which will be held at Valhalla CC in Louisville, Sept. 18-21.
"Noboby is jumping off the page," said Azinger, who will announce his wild-card selections at a press conference at the Radisson Martinique in New York on Tuesday, Sept. 2.
That nobody includes the next two players on the points list, Steve Stricker and Woody Austin. Although Azinger once said he would not rule out players from the Nationwide or Champions tours, he did say his rather long short list did not included the likes of Scott Piercy, Fred Funk or Tom Kite, recents winners on their respective circuits.
-- Tim Rosaforte