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With the 2012 Ryder Cup fast approaching, it's time to meet Team Europe.
With the Ryder Cup starting this week at Medinah Country Club outside of Chicago, it's time to see just who the United States team is up against. Team Europe captain José María Olazábal will be familiar to most American golf fans. The two-time Masters champion will look to take advantage of an impressive Ryder Cup history and guide the Europeans to their fifth win in the last six tournaments. Olazábal's vice captains are Thomas Björn, Darren Clarke, Miguel Angel Jiménez and Paul McGinley.
The top qualifier for the Europeans was world No. 1 Rory McIlroy (4,050,288.10 points), followed by Justin Rose (2,602,910.21 points), Paul Lawrie (2,384,837.11 points) and Graeme McDowell (2,375,790.52 points). The two captain's picks are Ian Poulter and Nicolas Colsaerts, who not only is the only rookie on the European team, but also is the first Belgian to ever compete in the Ryder Cup.
Here is the European roster, in its entirety:
José María Olazábal - Spain (Captain)
Thomas Björn - Sweden (Vice Captain)
Darren Clarke - Northern Ireland (Vice Captain)
Miguel Angel Jiménez - Spain (Vice Captain)
Paul McGinley - England (Vice Captain)
Nicolas Colsaerts - Belgium (Captain's Pick)
Luke Donald - England
Sergio Garcia - Spain
Peter Hanson - Sweden
Martin Kaymer - Germany
Paul Lawrie - Scotland
Graeme McDowell - Northern Ireland
Rory McIlroy - Northern Ireland
Francesco Molinari - Italy
Ian Poulter - England (Captain's Pick)
Justin Rose - England
Lee Westwood - England