McGinley to captain Ireland at 2016 Olympics


Paul McGinley is returning to the captain's seat.

After leading the Europeans to a resounding victory at the Ryder Cup earlier this year, McGinley has been named captain of the Irish Olympic team, with golf set to return to the Games in Rio in 2016.

“It was a great honor for me over the last two years to represent Europe as captain and I am now delighted to have the opportunity to assist my country as team leader of the men’s and ladies' Irish golf team at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games," McGinley said.

The Olympics will feature a 60-person field for both men and women, with the format set for 72 holes of stroke play. While the standings will continue to evolve as the event approaches, McGinley's team will likely include current world No. 1 Rory McIlroy, who announced earlier this year that he will play for Ireland instead of Great Britain, at the Olympics.

McIlroy's teammate based on the current standings would be another player familiar with McGinley's leadership: Graeme McDowell, currently No. 15 in the OWGR. Shane Lowry is the closest Irishman to McDowell in the rankings at No. 44, but there is a steep drop after Lowry. Ulsterman Michael Hoey is currently No. 199, followed by Padraig Harrington at No. 260.

Based on the current rankings for the women, Stephanie Meadow would be the only player from Ireland to qualify for the event.