'Ian Baker-Finch is a fine gentleman with a great deal of experience, having served as captain's assistant for Peter Thomson in the 1996 Presidents Cup,' said Player. 'He is doing a superb job as a television commentator and therefore sees these players week in and week out. This will be a real plus for our International team and The Presidents Cup as a whole.
'We should have another strong presence of Australasian players on this team and he knows these players really well. And it is always good to look at a person as a possible future captain.'
This will be the second time that Baker-Finch, a native of Nambour, Australia, has served in that role.
'I am honored to be chosen by Gary Player to be his captain's assistant,' said Baker-Finch. 'I had one of the best weeks of my life as Peter Thomson's captain's assistant in 1996 and look forward to this wonderful experience again.
'I am excited about being a part of The Presidents Cup this year in South Africa and look forward to helping the International team win back the Cup. The International team is already shaping up to be one of great strength and diversity, with players from nine different nations among the top 14 in the most recent standings.'
The winner of the 1991 British Open championship, Baker-Finch was a respected international player who captured 15 titles worldwide, including victories in Australia, Europe, Japan and the United States. Baker-Finch's first PGA Tour victory came at the 1989 Southwestern Bell Colonial.
Since retiring from competitive golf in 1997, Baker-Finch has worked as a television golf commentator. In 1998, Baker-Finch joined the broadcast team at ABC Sports. During his playing days, he also regularly worked during the winter months doing golf commentary in Australia.
The fifth playing of The Presidents Cup, originally scheduled for November 2002 in South Africa, will be played November 18-23, 2003.
Jack Nicklaus is the captain of the United States team, and will announce his captain's assistant in the near future.