Nigel Edwards reappointed Walker Cup captain
Thursday, January 16, 2014
The R&A has broken with tradition and appointed Nigel Edwards as Great Britain & Ireland's Walker Cup captain for a third consecutive time. He will lead GB&I against the U.S. in the biennial amateur matches next year at Royal Lytham.
No one had captained the GB&I team more than twice.
“I’m very proud to have the opportunity to captain the Great Britain and Ireland Walker Cup team for a third time in 2015,” Edwards said. “I’m looking forward to continuing my involvement and using my past experience as both a player and captain to make sure the players are prepared to play to the best of their ability.”
Edwards was first appointed captain for the 2011 match at Royal Aberdeen in Scotland. He led GB&I to victory against the Americans after three consecutive defeats. The 45-year-old Welshman also captained GB&I last year at National Golf Links in Southampton, N.Y., but saw his side lose, 17-9.
Edwards played in four consecutive Walker Cups, from 2001 to '07, appearing on winning teams in '01 and '03.
“Nigel has demonstrated great passion and pride for the Walker Cup,” said Jonathan Plaxton, chairman of the R&A selection committee. “He has proven to be very popular with the players, and his experience in the amateur game will continue to be a tremendous asset.”
Edwards is heavily involved in the amateur game in his role as performance director for England Golf. He previously served as director of player development and coaching for the Golf Union of Wales.
The R&A had been expected to reappoint Edwards, given his impressive credentials. However, there is another reason: A dearth of candidates for GB&I.
“The problem is that very few Walker Cup players these days stay amateur,” said Peter Dawson, the R&A's chief executive. “Most turn professional after the Walker Cup. It is a problem that has to be looked at going forward.”