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Q. You’re about to be the Ryder Cup captain for the second time, so this has been something you’ve been participating in for years now. Do you feel like you have enough energy mentally, physically to stay play at an elite level where you can win golf tournaments, or do you feel like you’ve moved into a new chapter of the career?

LUKE DONALD: I would say I’ve changed my expectation a little bit because I have this role that takes up a lot of time in the captaincy. I think that as a long-time competitor, you have high expectations.

I’ve had to sort of rein those back a little bit, but in a way, sometimes lowering those helps you just kind of go and play and not have too much expectation and do fine.

I have plenty of time to do both. I don’t think I’ll be playing quite as many tournaments this season as I did the last two seasons. I don’t think it’s necessary, plus my status on the PGA TOUR would require some invites. I’d rather play a little bit more next year leading up to New York than kind of burn through some potential invites that I might be given this year.

I want to be able to play enough events in the DP World Tour so that I can keep tabs on some potential players. I also want to maintain communication and relationships.

Q. What has the conversation been like between the European team and Jon and Tyrrell, now that they’re on LIV, and do you think they will be part of the Bethpage team?

LUKE DONAL: Conversations. This is my first time out. I haven’t seen too many of the guys. We still have a group WhatsApp chat, and we’re all participating in that chat that we created for Rome.

There’s nothing adverse or anything within that chat. Everyone understands each individual wants to do the best for themselves, and I don’t think anyone is judging Tyrrell or Jon’s decision.

Tyrrell Hatton is hoping to continue his Ryder Cup Career despite joining LIV Golf

Q. Do you see the player on the team?

LUKE DONALD : Do I see them? It’s really hard for me to answer that question now. I was a captain last year and I controlled what I could control. We’re seven months out probably since qualification starts. We’re hearing about possible deals with the PGA TOUR. DP World Tour. PIF. I have no idea what’s going to happen, and for the next seven months, I don’t really need to know what’s going to happen because qualification for the Ryder Cup won’t start until then.

Q. How did you feel about Rory making it sound like it’s no big deal for those guys to be on the team?

LUKE DONALD: Well, again, Rory’s comment, he was a little inaccurate in terms of changing the rules for Jon to be a part of it because currently right now you have to be European and be a member of the DP World Tour. Jon and Tyrrell would still be eligible as far as I am aware. Nothing has changed.

I was able to choose the guys who resigned their membership last year. The guys that decided to resign their membership, yeah, at that point I couldn’t pick them, but at this moment those are the rules, and so far I’m sure Jon, I’m sure Tyrrell, they want to be a part of it, and they will hopefully adhere to whatever the rules are that allows them to play in the Ryder Cup.

Q. You’ve already brought Edoardo to the next year. Do you see a scenario where the LIV guys are in the backroom with you?

LUKE DONALD: It’s always a possibility. Again, the vice captains I had in place were in constant contact with many of the players who were eligible. Again, the Sergios are part of a rich history. But again, it’s very hard to tell. A vice captain’s role is to be around the players, and have those relationships.

We didn’t have anyone on LIV in the 2023 Ryder Cup, so we’ll have to see whether those relationships are good enough.

Again, these are all questions that I don’t really need to make decisions on right now.

Rory Mcllroy wants Tyrrell Hatton and Jon Rahm to be part of the team

Q. How do you react when your European team members pay for the Ryder Cup and then go to the LIV and risk that privilege?

LUKE DONALD : Yeah, Jon made the decision that it was best for him. Many guys have decided to go to LIV because they felt comfortable and thought it was the right choice for them. I’m not here to judge that.

Sometimes those decisions have consequences. There’s been a lot of talks about the World Rankings and should LIV guys get it. I think that there are sometimes consequences to certain choices, and I’m sure a lot of the LIV guys knew it going in.

I have seven months to go until the qualification begins. The game can be unpredictable. It’s continuing to change. It’s continuing to evolve. We don’t know what’s going to happen over the next few months. Until I know, I’m not going to make any decisions.

Luke Donald at Medinah, 2012

Q. What made Medinah’s 2012 team special in your opinion?

LUKE DONALD: Well, I think if you think about José María’s role as captain, he certainly talked a lot about Seve. Seve has been the Ryder Cup legacy figure that we look up to. We admire what it means to him, his efforts to inspire teammates, and the importance of Ryder Cup history.

Obviously with the passing of Seve a few months or I can’t remember the exact date, but a few months before that Ryder Cup, he was certainly a presence that we felt that was sort of guiding us a little bit.

I thought it was a great help on that particular Sunday. We didn’t have a lot of momentum the first couple days. We had a bit of momentum Saturday evening. We had a positive attitude going into Sunday. I’m sure Seve’s spirit and some of the conversations and stories and inspiration that José María kind of gave us inspired us to that comeback.


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