Rahm ready to channel 'inner Seve' as Ryder Cup role model

HOYLAKE, United Kingdom: Jon Rahm said on Sunday he is ready to follow in the footsteps of fellow-Spaniard Seve Ballesteros by being a leader for Europe at the Ryder Cup later this year.

The world number three finished tied for second at the British Open as four other Europeans – Sepp Straka, Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood and Matthew Jordan – also finished in the top 10.

Rahm has played in two previous Ryder Cups, helping the hosts coast to victory in France in 2018 before the USA gained revenge with a emphatic 19-9 win two years ago.

Ballesteros, who died in 2011, is regarded as one of the all-time Ryder Cup greats.

The five-time major winner was a part of four winning European sides as a player and one as captain in 1997.

"If they want me to be a role model on the team or a leader, I will be," said Rahm.

"I'm not the most vocal. I'm quite introverted myself, but I'll do what I can. I'll try to channel my inner Seve and do what I can do."

In Rahm and McIlroy, Europe can count on two of the world's top three, but the Americans boast greater strength in depth based off the rankings.

However, the Masters champion is confident Europe can again prove to be a greater collective to regain the trophy.

"It's 18-hole matches. It's about showing up that day. That's why I think Europe has done a really good job in the past," added Rahm.

"We always hear about the accolades the American team always has, and they still do, and on paper they should be better, but it's all about what you do against the man in front of you that day."

This year's Ryder Cup takes place in Rome from September 29 to October 1. -- AFP

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