MBE tops Matthew's year
Ricoh British Open winner Catriona Matthew has said her MBE award in the New Year Honours List is "the icing on the cake" of 2009.
By Rachel Griffiths
Last Updated: 31/12/09 9:49am
Ricoh British Open winner Catriona Matthew has said her MBE award in the New Year Honours List is "the icing on the cake" after an incredible 2009.
The 40-year-old enjoyed an astonishing summer, triumphing in the Royal Lytham tournament to become the first Scotswoman to win a major - with the success coming just 11 weeks after she had given birth to her second daughter and only a week after escaping from a hotel fire.
"This is a wonderful surprise and a fantastic end to what has been a very special year in so many ways," said Matthew, who has won six international titles over her professional career.
"Having had Sophie in May I never envisaged winning a major golf championship this year.
"The reaction to it and the recognition I have had has been amazing and I'm very grateful to everyone for their support. The MBE really is the icing on the cake."
Edinburgh-born Matthew, who has competed for Europe in the Solheim Cup on four occasions, won her first LET title at the 1998 McDonald's WPGA Championship of Europe and secured eight top 10s on the LPGA tour in 2002.
Matthew was also named Ladies European Tour Players' Player of the Year in December, and the board hailed her latest accolade in a statement.
"Catriona has always been a wonderful ambassador for the game of golf but she shot to prominence in 2009 as one of the UK's finest sporting talents with her sensational victory at the Ricoh British Open," said the statement.
"In recognition of her achievements, the Ladies European Tour membership recently voted her as the Players' Player of the Year and clearly she thoroughly deserves this honour.
"Her conduct on and off the course is exemplary and in sport there can be no greater role model."