GB&I Captain: We’re Ready For USA

Matthews says squad prepared to end seven-Match losing streak to Americans


The 2012 Great Britain and Ireland Curtis Cup Team is preparing hard to end a seven-Match losing streak to the Americans at The Nairn Golf Club in Scotland. (Courtesy LGU)
By Ladies Golf Union
June 1, 2012

Great Britain and Ireland team captain Tegwen Matthews says her game plan for next week's three-day Curtis Cup contest at The Nairn Golf Club is no secret. She wants her players to go on the offensive against the Americans from the first tee in every match.

"Over the years, GB and I teams have been very good at fighting back after letting the Americans get too far in front of us to be caught," said the Welsh woman who played in four Curtis Cup matches in the 1970s and was skipper Mary McKenna's understudy in the last two matches.

"This time I want it to be the Americans who are playing catch-up golf. I am hammering home to our girls that they have got start fast, win holes and put the pressure on their opponents.

"My message to the GB and I team has been that this is not stroke-play where you can start slowly and pick up your momentum later on, even the next day. This is match-play. A completely different mindset is called for.

It is essential that we make good starts in all our matches."

Tegwen maintains that she has no idea who the top players in the American team are - and she doesn't want to know.

"As I've said, this is match-play. Even Tiger Woods in his prime could be beaten over 18 holes. So that's what I've been getting across to our girls. Everyone of these Americans is beatable on any given day. That's what match-play is all about and I don't care if we have not won the Curtis Cup since 1996, it should not have the slightest bearing on next week's match."

Are the GB and I team ready to end the sequence of seven defeats in a row?

"You bet they are. The girls are getting cheeky .... not disrespectful ... just cheeky and I think that's a good sign. They are a happy team and that counts for a lot."

Tegwen with team manager Mary Hubbard has been with the GB and I squad practising and playing at Murcar Links since Thursday. They will catch the 1pm train from Aberdeen to Nairn on Sunday.

Today (Saturday) will be spent on short-game tests with a competitive element worked into the format.

"Somebody asked me why we were practising at Murcar Links instead of Nairn," said Tegwen. "It's because I don't want them to get bored with the course over which they're going to play the Curtis Cup. They saw it for three or four days in March and I've been up there with Charley Hull who missed the selection trial because she was playing in the LPGA Tour event.

"So if we had gone straight to Nairn this week instead of coming here to Aberdeen, there was a danger that they might get bored playing the same holes day after day.

"Here at Murcar Links it's been great. Superb practice facilities and a different kind of links course from Nairn to keep the girls on their toes."

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