Jamie Donaldson backs Darren Clarke as Ryder Cup skipper

Media playback is not supported on this device

The moment Europe retained the Ryder Cup

Jamie Donaldson has backed the appointment of Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke as Europe's Ryder Cup captain in the United States in 2016.

Welsh rookie Donaldson's shot clinched the 2014 crown at Gleneagles when Irishman Paul McGinley led Europe.

A five-man panel selected 46-year-old Clarke ahead of Spain's Miguel Angel Jimenez and Thomas Bjorn of Denmark.

"He'll be a very good captain and follow well on to Paul McGinley's captaincy last year," said Donaldson.

"So I'm sure he'll do a fantastic job.

"He's played on many Ryder Cup teams and been their vice-captain so he knows what it's all about.

BBC chief sports writer Tom Fordyce on Clarke:
"A leader chosen by those serving under him is sometimes unable to make the tough decisions required. Where does friendship end and authority begin? Clarke is likely to be able to judge as well as anyone can." Read more.

"He's vastly experienced and he'll be great around the team room and will captain the team very well."

Clarke has won the tournament four times as a player and was a non-playing vice-captain for wins in 2010 and 2012.

The winner of the 2011 Open at Royal St George's has lost just once in the seven times he has been involved in the Ryder Cup, the defeat at Brookline in 1999.

After a quartet of victories as a player - in 1997, 2002, 2004 and 2006 - Clarke helped successive captains Colin Montgomerie and Jose Maria Olazabal achieve success.

Jamie Donaldson
Jamie Donaldson won three out of four points on his Ryder Cup debut

Clarke, who first played in the Ryder Cup under Seve Ballesteros and has won 11½ points from his 20 matches in the tournament, was not involved in the 2014 win under McGinley after running against him for the captaincy.

Donaldson has also set his sights on making the 2016 event.

He told Radio Wales Sport: "It's something you don't want to miss. I thoroughly enjoyed my debut in every way, not just that I happened to play well.

"It was just an incredible experience to be part of the whole Ryder Cup myth.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy praised the selection of Clarke as Ryder Cup captain last week, before the official announcement

"It was awesome. Just standing on that first tee, the nerves and the adrenaline pumping through your body is like nothing else we ever experience.

"You've got 15,000 people cheering your name as you walk down the first fairway. There's nothing like it in golf."

Top Stories