Bernhard Langer believes Pádraig Harrington can emulate his PGA Tour Champions career provided he stays healthy enough.
Harrington has taken to the seniors circuit by storm, winning four times in his maiden season including the US Senior Open. Now Langer, who has 44 champions tour gongs, feels the Dubliner has the length off the tee to enjoy a similarly glittering senior career.
“I absolutely think he can. He is by far the longest player right now off the tee and with is length he has a huge advantage on many of the courses,” explained the German. “He’s great at everything he does, he has a great short game, good iron player and he’s a good thinker and all that.
“He has already won quite a lot in his first year and if he continues to stay healthy he will win a bunch of them.”
The 65-year-old is just one win shy of matching Hale Irwin’s record of 45 Champions Tour wins and he feels fit enough to do so.
“It would be fun, anytime you set a record it’s fun but they are all going to be broken sooner or later. Hardly any record stands very long these days. I never thought I would get near this and now I am only one away, lost a bunch of playoffs and a bunch of seconds the last few years. Hopefully it will happen but if not, life goes on.
“I always said if I’m healthy enough to do it and can swing the club the way I want to I can still have some fun and some success so those three things need to be in place if the first two are missing it’s time to think about quitting the game, but I’m a long way from that.”
German representation on the European Ryder Cup team in Rome seems very unlikely as Luke Donald’s charges bid to reclaim the cup which they lost in record-breaking fashion to the USA in 2021. Langer though is confident that home advantage will give Europe that extra edge in September.
“Obviously we have some great players like Rory and Jon Rahm and a few others that are fantastic and are in top form, maybe world number one and two at the moment. But it takes more than two guys you need a good team below them and we have a lot of depth in Europe.
“We shouldn’t have too much of a problem I think our home advantage will help. The last 28 or 30 years we haven’t lost on home soil if I remember correctly but the American team is very strong and they will have their hands full.”
The two-time Masters winner was speaking at the One Green Way Invitational in Quinta do Lago where he teed it up alongside some of the greats of the game including Jose Maria Olazabal, Suzann Pettersen, Dame Laura Davies and Annika Sörenstam.
“I had a wonderful week here in Quinta do Lago. Beautiful weather and enjoyed the company of my colleagues and played with a former Spanish national amateur that is a +3 handicap which was fun to watch. I didn’t have my best game but I shot six-under for three days but that’s OK, we’ll get rid of the rust.
“It was great fun to see some of my colleagues who I sometimes don’t see in America on the Champions Tour where I spend most of my time. It was great to hang out with the ladies and share some stories and reminisce, it was great to play with Olazabal for the three days and it was his birthday!”
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