Europe retained the Solheim Cup right here in dramatic circumstances on Sunday. The house workforce didn’t win – within the standard sense – however the euphoric celebrations after the 14-14 draw signified this felt each bit like a triumph and that historical past had been made.
With the King of Spain watching on, Carlota Ciganda, the house favorite, received the essential level that ensured the blue and gold hold maintain of the Cup going right into a fourth match. By no means have they clasped on to the crystal trophy for therefore lengthy. It was a situation they might have accepted gladly once they have been whitewashed 4-0 in Friday’s opening foursomes.
In fact, Suzann Pettersen’s workforce have been chasing an unprecedented third win in succession and in the course of an enthralling – at occasions excruciating – afternoon, this appeared nearly a formality. What adopted was an hour during which the Stars and Stripes unfurled over the hilly Costa del Sol structure, with Group USA out of the blue with the leaderboard of their management.
Georgia Corridor missed a five-footer on the sixteenth after which three-putted from eight toes on the seventeenth to present Andrea Lee a half. In behind, Scottish rookie Gemma Dryburgh let a two-up lead slip, as Cheyenne Knight additionally claimed an unlikely half. At that stage, with the guests 13-11 to the great and main in two of the matches left on the course, the portents have been the alternative of the fantastic sunshine.
Ciganda will little question command the Iberian headlines – and with good cause contemplating the way she stored her nerve when world No 3 Nelly Korda clawed again to degree with three holes remaining – however Caroline Hedwall was simply as huge part of the story. Perhaps much more so.
With six holes left, the world No121 who had been struggling all week together with her sport, was three right down to Ally Ewing. However Hedwall, a shock and brave wildcard on Pettersen’s behalf, birdied 5 of these six holes to win two-up. The Swede’s 20-footer on the seventeenth to take the lead, created such a din that the Europe trigger appeared irresistible.
Nonetheless, in behind, Korda had fought again from three-down to drag degree on the fifteenth. She hit her second into sixteenth to seven toes and but once more the pendulum swung. Step up Ciganda, the girl from Pamplona, to fireplace in her method to a couple toes. Andalucia went wild and when Ciganda fired in her tee-shot to a few toes on the seventeenth, Stacy Lewis, the US captain, knew she was going house empty-handed.
Within the final match, Lexi Thompson was two-under with three remaining towards Emily Pedersen. If the Dane may seize a half it could current Europe with the final word triumph. However Thompson stayed robust and the celebration may begin. The primary attract Solheim historical past, however that felt scant comfort to Lewis and her workforce.
In fact, People don’t absolutely perceive the idea of a tie, however they may merely be relieved that the identical captains will reconvene for an additional Solheim Cup – introduced ahead to even years to separate it from the Ryder Cup – in North Virginia.
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