With a birdie bonanza, refreshing sportsmanship, and excitement throughout, the Solheim Cup served up everything we’d hoped for from the contest, bar a European victory of course.
Few could argue that the Americans were not the deserving winners, with the home team playing to an incredibly high standard at Des Moines Golf and Country Club.
Nonetheless the European appeared far from desolate following the conclusion of the match. Here’s six reasons why.
Women’s Golf Finally In The Spotlight
With a series of controversies overshadowing the female circuits on both sides of the Atlantic this year, we were finally served up a spectacle that could get people talking for all the right reasons.
The golf on show was some of the best ever witnessed at the Solheim Cup, and provided the ideal platform to showcase the incredible skill of the world’s best female golfers.
Just a few days short of her forty-eighth birthday, it’s hard not to admire what Catriona Matthew has achieved this week.
The Scot wasn’t even meant to be in the squad, having missed out on a captain’s pick, but stepped up to the plate with incredible poise following Suzann Pettersen’s injury to become one Europe’s stand out players.
Matthew looked composed throughout, making an unlikely comeback against Stacy Lewis in the Sunday singles to win three out of a possible four points.
Georgia Continues to Impress
If there was any doubt whether Georgia Hall was set to challenge Charley Hull and Jodi Ewart Shadoff as England’s best female golfer then it was answered emphatically at Des Moines Golf and Country Club.
The twenty-one-year old showed the same composure that had seen her seal a top three finish at the Ricoh Women’s British Open, and as arguably Europe’s best player, showed the potential to rise to the very top of the game.
What a Match
While the Solheim Cup may have been won convincingly by the Americans, Lexi Thompson and Anna Nordqvist produced a contest that left us all clinging to the edge of our seats.
Having been four-up at the turn, it looked like the Swede was walking away with the opening encounter, which pitted the two highest ranked players in their respective teams against each other.
That was before Lexi played the next seven holes in an unbelievable 8-under-par, which included two eagles, to take a slight advantage down the closing hole, only for Nordqvist to then play a laser like approach into eighteen, to seal a halve and close off one of the finest matches in Solheim Cup history.
A Transfromed Annika Sorenstam
Having long grown used to watching Annika show little emotion on the golf course, the Swede looked like a transformed personality in her role of captain, even dancing with her American counterpart on the first tee before the final day singles.
Some questioned whether the ice-like temperament that had helped her win over 70 professional tournaments as a player would transfer well to her role at the helm. As it was, she seemed totally as ease with her role as head motivator, and despite her team’s disappointing lose, few would attribute the defeat to her performance as a captain.
Europe has long been renowned for their team spirit, and while the USA seemed as united as we’ve ever seen them this weekend, the away team again impressed with their resilience and fight to the death. The moment the entire team joined hands to walk behind the final match was extremely touching, and summed up everything that is good about the Solheim Cup.
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