Padraig Harrington: Shane Lowry would have made Ryder Cup team if it was picked in June

Europe vice-captain chats to Off The Ball as the team is confirmed

Shane Lowry

Shane Lowry plays his way out of a bunker on the fourth hole ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Padraig Harrington says Shane Lowry would have pretty much been a definite for the Europe Ryder Cup team had it been picked in June instead of late August.

Ireland's Lowry missed out on selection for 2016 and Harrington says the Offaly golfer is "comfortably good enough to be playing in the Ryder Cup".

Speaking to Off The Ball, he said: "He's made a choice to go to the States which means he gets caught between two stools - he's not on one tour and he's playing new golf courses in the States.

"If it was Shane that turned up in Denmark and if it was him who was winning the tournament and not Thomas Pieters, he would have forced his way into the team at the end of it.

"If the team was picked in June after the US Open, of course Shane would have been picked."

Thomas Pieters of Belgium was one of the three picked by captain Darren Clarke and vice-captain Harrington expects big things from the 24-year-old.

Thomas Pieters, of Belgium, tees off on the 18th hole during the first round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament in Orlando, Fla., Thursday, March 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

"You've got to say Thomas Pieters forced his way into the team. He's potentially a world No 1 player. This is a big star for the future," he said.

"The rest of the team are clamouring to partner up in foursomes and four-ball. Put it like that. Everybody wants to play with Thomas Pieters. This is a guy who's going to win points for other guys."

Speaking to Off The Ball as Clarke chose his three wildcard picks for Hazeltine, Harrington detailed his own experience on what it takes to succeed in the tournament environment.

And he also discussed the mindset when picking a Ryder Cup team.

"I think people get very confused when they look at captain's picks and they think that the 12 best players should be picked for the team. Well, if that was the case, we'd have no selections, we'd just have a pure order of merit," he said, adding that how the players dovetail in a team environment become more important."