Cape Town - Ian Poulter could barely contain his excitement after
securing a spot in Europe's Ryder Cup team for the sixth time in his career.
After producing several memorable performances in the
contest, Poulter is rightly regarded as one of the finest Ryder Cup players in
His record of 12 wins out of 18 since his debut in 2004
speaks for itself, and the day he helped spark Europe's comeback in the
"Miracle at Medinah" in 2012 will live on forever in the memories of
all who saw it.
Poulter was forced to watch from the sidelines as a
vice-captain to Darren Clarke at Hazeltine in 2016 as he recovered from a foot
injury, but is absolutely over the moon after being given another chance to
return as a player.
"This feels extra special to be part of another Ryder
Cup team," said the Englishman, who has fought his way back up to 33rd in
the world rankings after slipping outside the top 200 last year.
"For Thomas to give me the call yesterday to say 'I'd
like you to join this great team' means absolutely everything to me, and it's
going to be an incredible spectacle.
"It is a very strong US team but when you look at the
European Team on paper now I get goosebumps just standing here thinking about
"This Ryder Cup is everything to me and for me to know
I am going to be part of that team, hopefully part of a victorious team, and to
lift that trophy again, that keeps me going.
"It has been a tough two years - 208th in the world
rankings two years ago - but that little gold trophy kept my heart beating and
to be competing for that again is magical."
Meanwhile, fellow captain's pick Henrik Stenson was widely
expected to get the nod, but that doesn't mean the call from Bjorn wasn't an
"It means a lot to me," said the Swede. "I've
got some of the greatest memories of my career from being part of the European
Ryder Cup team, so to get that phone call to be playing in Paris is incredible.
I'm super-excited and I'm going to do my very best to show up with my best form
"It's going to be a great venue. Europe has one of the
strongest teams we've ever had, so does America, so it's all set for possibly
the greatest battle ever."