Knox could be record-tying sixth European Ryder rookie

Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:15pm EDT
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By Larry Fine

FARMINGDALE, New York (Reuters) - Scotsman Russell Knox sits fourth on the FedExCup points list but may need a strong showing at The Barclays, which opens the lucrative PGA Tour playoffs this week, to join the European Ryder Cup team.

Knox has won twice this season and had a pair of runner-up finishes but landed outside the group of nine automatic qualifiers because his win at the WGC-HSBC Champions in China did not earn him Ryder Cup points as he was not a European Tour member at the time.

European captain Darren Clarke will announce on Aug. 30 three picks to complete a team that will go for an unprecedented fourth win in a row against the U.S. in the biennial event at Hazeltine in Minnesota starting on Sept. 30.

"It's important but it's not the end of the world. If he chooses not to pick me, I'm not going to sulk in the corner," Knox told reporters at Bethpage Black on Tuesday. "He has every right not to pick me. He has every right to pick me."

Knox may not be as blase about the nomination as he let on.

"No contact with Darren Clarke. They are probably keeping quiet," he said. "Hopefully I'll hear from him a week today, that's the goal.

"I feel like I've done everything I could do. I played my best. I made the commitment to join The European Tour so I was eligible. I played well. So I guess I've made my case and hopefully it's good enough."

Should Knox make the European team, he would become the sixth Ryder Cup rookie on the team, tying a record set in 2010 when Rory McIlroy and Martin Kaymer were among the first-timers.   Continued...

Jun 30, 2016; Akron, OH, USA;  Russell Knox of Scotland hits a tee shot on the third hole at Firestone Country Club - South Course. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports