Solheim Cup: A review of the 12 singles matches on a super Sunday at Gleneagles
Last Updated: 15/09/19 9:56pm
The 16th Solheim Cup produced a memorable final day at Gleneagles with Europe claiming a dramatic 14.5-13.5 victory over USA with the final putt. Here is a review of the 12 matches which led to that thrilling conclusion...
Carlota Ciganda bt Danielle Kang 1 up
Kang hit a nice approach to eight feet at the first and, after Ciganda's 15-footer was short of pace, Kang rolled hers in to give the Americans an early boost. But Ciganda's response was immediate, getting up and down from the back of the second green to level.
The Spaniard did well to hole from 10 feet to scramble a par at the tough fourth, and Ciganda edged ahead when Kang's bold par putt at the seventh powered through the break.
Ciganda holed a great putt for a half at the eighth, but a wayward drive into the knee-high rough at the ninth proved costly as she needed two stabs at getting her ball back to the fairway, from where she fatted her fourth and allowed Kang to draw level at the turn.
Both hit stunning approaches to gimme range at the 11th, but Kang regained the lead with a birdie at the 13th and did well to scramble a par at 15 to stay one-up with three to play.
However, Ciganda followed a perfect drive with a superb fairway-wood to the heart of the green at the long 16th, setting up a two-putt birdie for the win, and she almost ensured half a point minimum on 17 only for Kang to pull off an outstanding par save from the left bunker.
But after both hit good drives up the last, they bunkered their seconds and Kang chunked her third into the trap closer to the green, from where Ciganda splashed out to six feet. And, when Kang eventually found the green and missed from 12 feet for par, she reluctantly conceded defeat to give Europe the first point of the final day.
Caroline Hedwall lost to Nelly Korda 2 down
Hedwall had struggled for accuracy on Friday and did not feature at all on Saturday, but the Swede with a storied Solheim Cup record hammered a perfect drive down the first, knocked her second to 10 feet and nailed the putt to go one up.
Another birdie from the Swede doubled her lead, but she then gifted a hole back with a miss from short range for par at the third, although Korda returned the compliment on the next green.
Hedwall's Friday struggles were a distant memory when she drained another great putt to go three up at the sixth and she maintained that lead at the turn before Korda stopped the rot with a nice 10-footer for birdie at the 10th.
The American made it three in a row with an eight-foot birdie putt on 11 which Hedwall could not match, and the clash was level on 13 when the Swede could not follow Korda in for par.
And one hole later, Korda had the lead when she nailed a 12-footer for another birdie, and the debutant went two-up with three to play when Hedwall's three-footer for par grazed the left edge.
But Hedwall dug deep to hole a clutch putt for a winning birdie at 16, and she knocked a fine tee shot to seven feet at the 17th only to read too much break into the putt.
Hedwall then missed the green with her third to 18 and, with her opponent on in three, Hedwall's must-make birdie putt from the run-off area raced past the pin and forced her to concede defeat.
Georgia Hall bt Lexi Thompson 2&1
There was drama before match three had even teed off when it emerged that Thompson suffered a recurrence of a back injury while on the range, prompting fears that she would be unable to complete her match.
But she took an early lead when Hall's second to the first came up short and, after pitching to six feet, the par putt lipped out as Thompson got down in two to strike first. Both birdied the second before alarm bells rang in the USA camp when Thompson underwent treatment on her back after the third.
The world No 3 stayed in control and Hall had to dig deep to save par from 10 feet at the fifth and Hall then spurned two makeable putts to claw back the deficit on each of the next two greens.
However, Thompson three-putted the 10th as Hall pulled out a sublime up-and-down to win the hole with a par, and a four at the 11th gave Hall a third straight win and the lead when Thompson's putter again mis-fired.
A remarkable up-and-down from a tricky spot in a bunker from Thompson salvaged a par and a halved hole at 14, and she was again wayward at the 15th and lipped out for par to go two down with three to play.
Hall missed a chance to close it out at the long 16th, but she made no mistake at 17 as she found the edge of the green from the tee and lagged her putt after Thompson blocked her iron into the greenside trap and failed to hole out from the sand.
Celine Boutier bt Annie Park 2&1
Boutier got off to a horrendous start when she missed the green left at the first and needed three attempts to chip in, and she could not match Park's birdie at the second. The French rookie had a great chance to pull one back at the third, only to lip out from six feet, but she refused to panic and pars at the fifth and seventh were enough to level the encounter.
Both birdied the ninth, and the 10th looked set to be halved in birdies after Park holed from inside 10 feet, only for Boutier to misread her six-foot attempt, but she atoned on the next green to restore parity before gaining the lead for the first time in the match when Park's par putt at 13 horse-shoed out.
After halving the 14th in birdies, Boutier almost holed her second to 15 only for Park to hit her approach even closer, but both failed to convert before Boutier went dormie-two with a brilliant birdie at 16.
Both found sand from the tee at the short 17th, but Boutier held her nerve to play a sublime splash-out to gimme range, and Park's bunker escape was even better but not enough to extend the contest.
Azahara Munoz lost to Angel Yin 2&1
Munoz replicated Boutier's under-hit chip from a few minutes earlier as she fell a hole behind, and Yin's birdie at the second got the American off to a flyer.
Things got worse for the Spaniard when she three-putted the fourth green to hand another hole away, and although she rattled in a 30-footer for birdie on the seventh, Yin followed her in from 20 feet to stay three ahead.
Yin then went four up at the turn when Munoz could not make birdie at the ninth, but the home player regrouped and birdied 10 and 11 to halve the deficit, and the rejuvenated Munoz nailed a birdie putt from 20 feet to on 12 for her third consecutive win.
But her momentum stalled when she missed the target from short range at the next, although Munoz hit back with a winning birdie at the 14th before Yin managed to scramble a good par at 15 to remain one up.
Yin then restored her two-hole advantage when she holed from eight feet for a winning birdie at 16, and the match ended when Munoz failed to muster the birdie she needed on the penultimate hole.
Charley Hull halved with Megan Khang
Khang looked anything-but a rookie early on as she won the first with a solid par, and two meaty blows to the long second set up another win with Hull struggling to get into rhythm. The English youngster, playing in her fourth Solheim Cup at 23, wasted a couple of chances to respond and another at the seventh, where her tentative four-foot putt for birdie lipped out. Hull looked exasperated at the next when her five-footer performed a 180 around the lip and stayed out, but she finally got one to drop as the ninth was halved in birdie-fours.
Hull's more-confident stroke on the 10th resulted in a winning birdie and, after pars at 11, both got into trouble at 12 and traded bogeys. Khang erred again at 13 as Hull levelled the match with a par before both birdied the driveable par-four 14th.
The home star then moved into the lead for the first time in the match with a clutch birdie at the long 16th, and she had a decent chance to close it out at 17 to leave her one-up at the last.
But Hull then made a mess of the long 18th, duffing a pitch with her third before her next raced over the green from where she was not able to chip-in for par, gifting Khang the hole and a halved match.
Anne van Dam lost to Lizette Salas 1 down
Van Dam got off to a flying start, clipping a wedge in close at the first before Salas failed to save par anyway and, after they traded birdies at the second, Van Dam went two up with another birdie at the fifth, but a short-range miss on the next halved her advantage.
Van Dam remained ahead at the turn when both birdied the ninth but, after Salas holed for a three at the 10th, the Dutch rookie missed from eight feet.
A Salas birdie at 13 gave her the lead for the first time in the match, and both birdied 14 before Van Dam hauled herself back to level pegging when she holed a confident four-footer for a winning birdie at the long 16th.
But Van Dam then made a big mistake at 17th when she tugged her tee-shot into an awkward lie close to the lip of the greenside trap, and she caught her splash-out thin and was unable to match Salas' solid par from the other side of the putting surface.
Van Dam looked in good shape to birdie the last and snatch a half when she drilled her second to within a few yards of the green, but she got heavy-handed with her pitch and missed from 10 feet before tearfully conceding defeat.
Caroline Masson lost to Jessica Korda 3&2
Masson, keen to atone for missing a great chance to win her fourballs on Saturday evening, enjoyed the ideal start with a winning birdie at the first, and she doubled that lead when Korda missed a putt for par at the fourth from barely two feet away.
But the German's back-to-back bogeys at seven and eight allowed the American to level with a pair of pars, and Korda made it three straight wins with a birdie at the ninth to snatch the lead at the halfway stage.
Masson's par at 10 levelled the clash, but Korda went back ahead with a birdie at 12 before chipping in from the front fringe at the 13th to double her lead, although Masson's response was swift and immediate as she won the 14th with a good three.
However, her joy was short-lived as she lost the 15th to Korda's par, and the American wrapped up the point with another pinpoint putt for birdie at the 16th as Masson's putt to extend the contest slid wide.
Jodi Ewart Shadoff lost to Brittany Altomare 5&4
Ewart Shadoff struck the first blow when Altomare bogeyed the first, but the American debutant levelled immediately with a birdie at the second. Altomare edged ahead at the fifth thanks to a delightful second which was close enough for the Englishwoman to concede.
Altomare has impressed with her putting throughout the week, and she was on target again to double her lead at the eighth, and a shocking miss from inside two feet on the ninth by Shadoff gifted her opponent a three-up lead at the turn.
Altomare went further ahead with a perfect 10-footer for birdie at the 10th, and a par at 12 gave her a fourth win in five holes and lifted her into a commanding five-up lead.
And the 28-year-old capped a hugely impressive rookie performance with her sixth birdie of the day at the 14th to complete a 5&4 thrashing of the out-of-sorts Shadoff.
Suzann Pettersen bt Marina Alex 1 hole
What would prove to be the match that decided the Solheim Cup started low key, with the first four holes shared before Pettersen went ahead with a cracking 25-footer for birdie at the fifth, and another dropped on the next to take the Norwegian stalwart two up.
Alex dropped her second birdie of the day at the eighth to pull one back and both made good fours at the long ninth before Pettersen went two-up once again with a birdie at the 11th.
Alex pulled one back when Pettersen bogeyed the 13th, and the match was all-square one hole later when Alex birdied. A sensational pitch from Pettersen snatched a half at the long 16th after Alex had stiffed her third, and both missed long-range birdie chances on the penultimate green.
The tension was maxed to the limit going up the last with all eyes on the final match to finish, and Pettersen atoned for a poor drive with a stunning third which almost spun back into the hole before coming to rest six feet from the flag.
Alex's third was arrow-straight but 12 feet long, and her tricky, downhill putt for birdie missed on the right to leave Pettersen staring at a six-footer to win the trophy back for Europe.
And the 38-year-old held her nerve to bury the putt in the middle of the cup to prompt wild celebrations from European players and fans amid emotional scenes around the 18th green.
Bronte Law bt Ally McDonald 2&1
Law's opening par earned her a win at the first, and McDonald birdied the third to level only to bogey the next, although a nice approach to the fifth set up another winning birdie for the American.
They traded birdie-twos at the sixth before Law's three at the next regained her the lead, only for McDonald to hit back at the eighth and a pair of birdies at the long ninth left them level heading into the back nine.
Law then fell behind with a bad miss from three feet at 10, and both were unable to save par at the 12th before Law levelled what was becoming an increasingly vital match with a birdie at 14.
The English rookie then got away with a mistake at 15 when she needed two attempts to escape a greenside trap, getting up-and-down for bogey after McDonald's 10-foot par putt shaved the edge of the cup.
Clearly pumped with adrenaline, Law nailed a 20-foot putt for a winning birdie at the 16th after getting a little heavy-handed with her pitch from just short of the green, and she was celebrating victory when McDonald bogeyed 17 before all eyes turn to the big screen to watch the conclusion of the Pettersen clash up ahead.
Anna Nordqvist bt 4&3 Morgan Pressel
Nordqvist gained the early advantage when she birdied the ninth before a par at the tough, par-three fourth was enough to go two up when Pressel missed the green from the tee.
Pressel got into further trouble at the seventh and failed to hole a six-footer for par to gift the Swede a three-up lead, but it was Nordqvist's turn to suffer on the greens on the next as she opened the door with a lip-out from four feet.
Both missed out on birdies at the long ninth, and Norqvist restored her three-up lead when Pressel bogeyed the 10th before the home star added another birdie at 11 to cruise into a four-up lead.
After the pair traded pars over the next two holes, and then birdies at the 14th, Nordqvist closed out a one-sided victory with a cast-iron par at the next.
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