Former Texas Tech star Ludwig Aberg will play Europe in the upcoming Ryder Cup, less than four months after turning pro.
Aberg, from Sweden, was one of Europe’s six captain Luke Donald’s selections announced on Monday. Donald also selected Tommy Fleetwood and Justin Rose from England, Sepp Straka from Austria, Shane Lowry from Ireland and Nikolai Hoggard from Denmark.
“It’s been a lot the last couple of months, but it’s been very exciting,” Aberge said. “I can’t wait for Rome.”
The 23-year-old Aberge secured his place on the European roster with a two-goal victory at the European Masters in Switzerland on Sunday in just his ninth start as a professional. Aberg would be the lowest experienced player ever to compete in the Ryder Cup.
“He showed yesterday in (Switzerland) that he has the potential to become one of golf’s superstars,” Donald said. “Obviously we knew what he was doing on the college scene. Look what he’d done in those four years. The only really comparable were Victor Hovland and John Rahm in the last 20 years. He’s so good at what he was doing. And obviously we were keeping eye on him.”
Donald said he played with Aberg in the Rocket Mortgage Classic and was “stunned by his game”. Aberg tied for fourth in the John Deere Classic the following week and tied for fourteenth in the Windham Championship. Aberg’s driving average of 317 yards would rank third on the PGA Tour if he had enough qualifying runs, behind Rory McIlroy (326.3) and Brandon Matthews (321.2).
“He kept going, and I challenged him and said, ‘Come to Europe and play for two weeks,'” Donald said.
Aberg tied for fourth at the Czech Masters in Prague last month before claiming his first professional win on Sunday. He had four birdies in the last five holes to beat Swede Alexander Bjork by two strokes.
Aberg was a two-time winner of the Ben Hogan Award as the best collegiate golfer and was the #1 amateur in the world.
“If you had told me two months ago that I would be involved in this kind of conversation, I probably wouldn’t have believed you,” Aberge said. “Obviously I am very fortunate to be in this position. I cannot thank the Commander and his deputies enough.”
Aberg will be one of four junior players to compete for Europeans at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club outside Rome from September 29-October. 1. FedEx Cup champions Straka, Hojgaard and automatic qualifier Hovland will also make their debut.
Along with Hovland, McIlroy and Ram, England’s Tyrell Hutton and Matt Fitzpatrick and Scotland’s Robert McIntyre were automatic qualifiers.
The Europeans will attempt to avenge a 19-9 loss to the Americans at Whistling Straits, Wisconsin, in 2021. The Europeans have won the past six Ryder Cups outside of the United States. The Americans’ last victory on foreign soil was a 15-13 win at The Bell Tower in Warwickshire, England, in 1993.