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Tom Watson becomes oldest U.S. Ryder Cup captain in history

September 30, 2013

Anyone who follows golf surely has heard of Tom Watson. The 64-year-old senior golfer was one of the most successful players during the 1970s and 80s, and the golf world surely remembers his epic battles with Jack Nicklaus. The eight-time major winner is still an active part of the game, and it was recently announced he will be the captain for the 2014 U.S. Ryder Cup team, making him the oldest person ever to be given the honor, as well as a model of active senior living.

This isn't the first time Watson has been tapped to captain the Ryder Cup squad. In 1993, he led the U.S. team to victory at The Belfry in England. In fact, that was the last time the American team won the competition on foreign soil. Despite his track record and the fact he almost won the British Open in 2009 at 59, Watson has come under some criticism given his age. Some players from the European squad have questioned whether he is as familiar with the game and the players as a younger captain would be. Watson has dismissed any such criticism.

"I know that I have the experience playing as a player, I have the experience of being a captain, and if I were a player on my team, looking at me, I'd say, 'Well, he has that experience,' " Watson said at a recent press conference. "That Ryder Cup experience; that's important."

The 2014 Ryder Cup is slated for Sept. 26 - 28 at Gleneagles in Scotland. The U.S. team is coming off a devastating loss in 2012, when it surrendered a big lead to lose by one point on the final day of competition.