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Ryder Cup: Tiger Woods confident of earning captain’s pick

6:51 pm, 21st August 2018

Woods narrowly missed out on automatic qualification for Team USA when he finished runner-up to Brooks Koepka at the PGA Championship after a thrilling final-round charge, and his hopes of competing at Le Golf National next month now hinge on him being one of Furyk’s four wildcards.

The 42-year-old is widely expected to be added to the team when Furyk unveils his first three picks on September 4, and Woods believes his overall form since returning to the PGA Tour makes him worthy of selection for his Ryder Cup appearance since 2012.

Woods is currently on Furyk’s backroom team for the showpiece in France, although the US skipper admitted last week that he would find an alternate assistant captain if he named the 14-time major champion as one of his wildcards.

“At the very beginning of the year, I told Jim I wanted to be a part of the team, not just as a vice-captain but as a player, and I’m very close to making that happen,” said Woods ahead of the Northern Trust – his first appearance in the FedExCup Play-Offs for five years.

“The interesting role here is that I’m a vice captain, so we’re talking about myself in the third person a lot. So, that’s one of the more interesting conversations we were having.

“We were having a lot of fun with it, but I’m one of the guys on the shortlist. I want to be picked and I want to be part of the team.

“It’s been a long year and one of my goals was to make that team, because to be part of that team, you’ve got to be one of the 12 best players and I’m kind of trending towards that.”

Woods also revealed that he was intending to play in all four of the FedExCup Play-Off events over the next five weeks, although he remains wary of the fatigue factor leading into his prospective Ryder Cup return.

“I’m playing the first three right now and that should get me into Atlanta and on the back side is obviously The Ryder Cup,” added Woods, who finished the regular season in 20th place on the FedExCup standings, with the top 30 following the BMW Championship competing in the season-ending Tour Championship.

“That is a lot of golf, so it’s about pacing myself and making sure I don’t practice too much and making sure my training schedule goes well.

“One of the hardest things this year has been trying to find the right balance and, as the summer has gone on, I’ve got better and felt better, and this is a pretty important stretch.”