Solheim Cup champ Catriona says no to third captaincy stint | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Solheim Cup champ Catriona says no to third captaincy stint

12 September, 2021
Catriona Matthew
Catriona Matthew

Victorious Solheim Cup captain Catriona Matthew said she would not be leading the team for a third time in 2023 after lifting the trophy in Ohio.

After success at Gleneagles in 2019, Matthew led Europe to a 15-13 win at Inverness Golf Club, becoming the first European captain to win the Cup twice.

When asked if she would be captain again in Spain in 2023, she said: “No. That’s over to someone else.”

The next Solheim Cup takes place at the Finca Cortesin club in Andalucia.

Victory in Toledo was just the second success on American soil for the European team and means they successfully defended the trophy they won in Scotland two years ago.

This victory was made more difficult by the lack of European fans at the course because of covid-related travel restrictions - with even family and friends of the European team missing.

It meant every European birdie and every hole won was greeted by near silence, while every half for the home side drew a thunderous response.

Charley Hull, now a veteran of five Solheim Cups despite being just 25, described the atmosphere of playing with only US fans watching on as strange.

Hull told Sky Sports: “It’s kind of weird - when the crowd goes wild - it is sometimes for a half.

“Even when we win we don’t really hear anything so you think you’re losing all the time until you look at the scoreboard and see we’re doing alright.”

If Matthew keeps to her word and does not continue as European captain then her successor will have huge shoes to fill going on the praise her players lavished on her in the aftermath of their victory.

Georgia Hall was among those to pay tribute, saying: “Our captain’s done a fantastic job with the pairings and the order so we couldn’t have asked for a better captain.

“She swapped some of the pairings which worked really, really well and to our advantage - she was amazing.

“She’s just so chilled all the time and is really positive with all of us. She’s amazing.”

And Madelene Sagstrom, who was at the centre of the controversy on Saturday when she was penalised for picking up Nelly Korda’s ball too quickly on the green, also praised her captain.

She said Matthew’s decision to put her out first on Sunday gave her confidence heading into the singles. “I’m very happy right now, I didn’t have the best start to the week,” she said.” (BBC Sport)