Donald names 'generational' talent Aberg plus Rose, Lowry among Ryder Cup picks

Justin Rose is among the European team's wild card selections for the Ryder Cup (ANDY LYONS)
Justin Rose is among the European team's wild card selections for the Ryder Cup (ANDY LYONS)

Europe Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald picked rising star Ludvig Aberg plus major winners Justin Rose and Shane Lowry among his six wildcards for the tournament in Rome.

His other selections for the 12-man team to take on the United States are Tommy Fleetwood, Sepp Straka and Nicolai Hojgaard.

They join automatic qualifiers Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Matt Fitzpatrick, Viktor Hovland, Tyrrell Hatton and Robert MacIntyre in Donald's team, which will attempt to regain the trophy at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club from September 29 to October 1.

Europe suffered a record 19-9 defeat at Whistling Straits in 2021.

Aberg only turned professional in June, but the former world number one amateur won the final qualifying event in Switzerland on Sunday with a final round of 64 at Crans-sur-Sierre.

The 23-year-old Swede has made the quickest transition from the amateur ranks to the Ryder Cup in the contest's history, eclipsing the previous record set by Sergio Garcia, who made his debut in September 1999 after turning professional following April's Masters.

"We have great depth of talent in Europe, and that is perfectly illustrated with the team we now have confirmed for Rome, which is a strong blend of players with previous Ryder Cup experience combined with exciting and talented rookies," said Donald.

"I'm really pleased to have this team now in place and we are all looking forward to going to Rome later this month and trying to win back the Ryder Cup."

Speaking about Aberg, the Europe skipper said: "We obviously knew what he was doing in the college scene. You look at what he did in those four years and the only comparables really were Viktor Hovland and Jon Rahm. He is that good."

He added: "I really do have a lot of faith and belief in Ludvig. He is a generational player, he's going to be around a long time and he's going to do amazing things.

"If he wasn't going to play this one he was going to play the next eight Ryder Cups, that's how good I think he is."

Former US Open champion Rose, who has not played in the Ryder Cup since 2018, ended a four-year title drought on the PGA Tour in February.

Lowry, the British Open champion in 2019, won the first qualifying event, the 2022 BMW PGA Championship, but has recorded just one top-10 finish this year.

The United States have not lifted the trophy on European soil since 1993 but will arrive in Italy as favourites, with three of this year's major champions including LIV star Brooks Koepka in their ranks alongside world number one Scottie Scheffler.

But Europe boast three of the top four ranked players in the world in McIlroy, Rahm and Hovland.