Bubba to join U.S. Ryder Cup practice session

Bubba Watson will join six members of the U.S. Ryder Cup team for an informal practice session this weekend at Hazeltine National, Golf Channel Insider Tim Rosaforte reported Thursday.

Watson, ranked No. 7 in the world, is not a member of the team. Davis Love III has one remaining captain’s pick, to be announced after next week’s Tour Championship.

Rosaforte said he asked Love if Watson has not been picked because of any issues with his personality. In a 2015 ESPN poll of 103 anonymous Tour pros, Watson was chosen as the player others would be least likely to help in a fight.

Love said Watson is “the opposite of that,” Rosaforte reported, and is a popular presence in the team room. “He’s quirky, but so is Phil [Mickelson,]” Rosaforte said Love told him.

“I told Bubba after the Olympics, remember, there’s a pick after the Tour Championship,” Love said he told Watson.

The last captain’s pick is informally known as the “Billy Horschel pick,” after Horschel in 2014 got hot at the end of the season, winning two playoff events and the FedEx Cup, but was locked out of the Ryder Cup team because the captain’s selections had already been made.

“If he plays well, he’s certainly going to be considered,” Rosaforte said. “He is not as negative an influence as many people wrote and led us to believe over the last couple of days, at least coming from captain Davis Love.”

The 41st Ryder Cup Matches will be played Sept. 30-Oct. 2 at Hazeltine National in Chaska, Minn. Europe has won the past three Ryder Cups and six of the past seven.

The six team members expected to join Love for the practice session are Rickie Fowler, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Jimmy Walker, Phil Mickelson and Brandt Snedeker, according to Rosaforte.

 

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