Suzann Pettersen could not have written a better script as she decided to call it quits on her career after Europe’s dramatic Solheim Cup victory.
As the next edition of Women & Golf is on the shelves this Friday 11th October, here’s a sneak preview of what you can expect from Lewine Mair's interview in this issue.
For me at least, there is one image from Europe’s amazing win in the Solheim Cup which will stick fast in the memory bank. Namely the sight of Suzann Pettersen bending over backwards as that six-footer tumbled into the hole for Europe to seize the match. She was not 100% sure of the significance of the putt in question, but the rising roar in the glen got the message across. It was, quite simply, the moment of the golfing year.
The sheer joy attached to 38-year-old Pettersen’s result had so much to do with the overall Pettersen story. It was a story which started with the tale of what happened at the ‘15 Solheim Cup when, to be ruthlessly honest, she inadvertently cost Europe the match - and came to its bitter-sweet conclusion when the player announced on the Sunday night that she was retiring. “I’m done,” were her first words on the subject. “I don’t have any plans starting from tomorrow. It doesn’t get any better, what with this being the Home of Golf and the big crowds and Beany (Catriona) being here. This is the ultimate scenario for winning the Solheim Cup back.”
Pettersen was injured for the match of 2017 - Catriona Matthew took her place – but was given what was by far the most controversial of Matthew’s four picks this year. People were asking whether the Norwegian deserved to be chosen in a year when she had played but two events ahead of the team’s announcement.
True, she had given birth to her first child, Herman, in August of 2018, but surely she could have done more to suggest that she was desperate for a place in the side? After all, Matthew had won the British Open of 2009 only 11 weeks after giving birth to her second daughter.
This, though, is how Matthew was seeing things....Having played alongside Pettersen in so many of the matches - they both have nine Solheims under their belt now – she knew exactly how scary an opponent the Norwegian was apt to make.
“Becoming a mum,” Petterson said on the day of the team’s announcement at the Gleneagles Hotel, “has given me the chance to look at myself from the outside... In twenty years of competitive golf, I had never switched off. It was only when I had Herman that I was able to step out of that bubble I’d been in for all those years and was almost able to laugh at my past self. I struggled to understand how I had been so intense.”
Women & Golf dared to tell her the story of how, towards the end of 2015, a new lad in the pressroom asked if he should step out and interview her about what happened in Germany.
“Give it a try,” we suggested rather meanly. The player gave him one of her famous stares and, thereafter, he could scarcely put two words together. On hearing this old yarn, Pettersen winced with sympathy for the poor fellow.
She went on to laugh at herself that day at Gleneagles. When asked if Herman was a good baby, she looked somewhat doubtful before saying that he certainly had his moments. “I guess,” she said, “that you get what you deserve...”
Herman was there at the end of her Gleneagles heroics and, though he will never remember what it was all about, he will probably spend the rest of his life being introduced as the son of Suzann, the player who holed a six-footer to win what was the greatest Solheim Cup of all time.
This is just a snippet of Suzann Pettersen's interview in the latest issue of Women & Golf magazine. You can pick up Women & Golf, on sale this Friday 11th October, or click here to subscribe now to read the full feature and enjoy W&G delivered to your door!
Image Credit: Getty Images & LET