Scotland’s best-selling golf magazine, bunkered, has launched a petition to get one of the country’s most successful golfing sons, Sandy Lyle, installed as the next European Ryder Cup captain.
The magazine plans to collect as many signatures as possible through an on-line petition, which it will then present to the European Tour Players’ Committee in December.
A successor to Nick Faldo – European captain for this year’s loss to America in Valhalla – is expected to be announced by the European Tour in January, with the appointed candidate taking over the reins for the team in time for the next match at the Celtic Manor Resort, Wales, in 2010.
Lyle is understood to be among those in consideration for the post, along with Spain’s Jose Maria Olazabal and Welsh legend Ian Woosnam.
However, bunkered believes that Lyle – the only one of Europe’s ‘Big Five’ of the 1980s to be so far overlooked for the honour – deserves the chance to lead the side.
“We believe that Sandy Lyle is long overdue the opportunity to captain Europe in the Ryder Cup,” said bunkered editor, Martin Dempster.
“Of Europe’s ‘Big Five’ of the 1980s, Lyle is the only one not to have been given this chance. Bernhard Langer, Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo and Ian Woosnam have all, derservedly, had their shot – now it’s Sandy’s turn, and we intend to do all we can to see that the European Tour give him the opportunity.”
Lyle was the first-ever British golfer to win the Masters and was also the first Brit to win The Open for nearly 20 years when he triumphed in 1985.
It is expected that the 2010 match would be his last realistic opportunity to captain the team.
“I would urge all golfers to get behind our bid to get Sandy appointed by signing our petition,” added Dempster. “No disrespect to any of the other names in the frame, we have the utmost respect for them all. It’s just that this is probably Sandy’s last chance and it would be a real kick-in-the-teeth to a true ambassador for European golf if he were to be denied this opportunity.
“We intend to gather as many signatures as possible and will deliver our petition backing Sandy in person to the European Tour in December. With enough support, we can get Sandy Lyle appointed.”
You can sign the petition up until 5th December by logging-on to www.bunkered.co.uk/sos