Nicholas prepared to face the elements
Europe’s captain Alison Nicholas is prepared for a fight from more than just the opposition at Killeen Castle this week.
Europe’s Solheim Cup captain Alison Nicholas is prepared for a fight from more than just the opposition at Killeen Castle this week.
With bad weather very much already in play (her teams’ practice sessions at Killeen Castle have been conducted largely in the wet) and more rain expected for the three days of the tournament, Nicholas knows that her side wil have to be ready for whatever the weather gods may throw at them.
Last year’s Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor had to be extended to a four-day competition because of bad weather and Nicholas knows that they may have to prepare for the same eventuality this week.
“I think they have contingency plans because obviously that could have been a possibility. The weather forecast tends to change on a daily basis, so they’ll be monitoring it. And if we have to go Monday, we’ll have to go Monday,” she said.
Nicholas does not believe that the tough conditions would necessarily be an advantage for her side, however.
“A lot of the players have played all over the world and are very experienced,” she said.
“It could be (an advantage) in some ways, but I know that I’ve played in bad weather over in America, and the Americans seem to adapt very, very well.”
Nicholas, a six-time Solheim Cup player, is captaining the side for the second successive contest, her last time round ending up in a 16-12 defeat at Sugar Grove two years ago.
It was also Europe’s third loss in a row, but Nicholas is confident that her team this year, which features five rookies, are ready to stand up and be counted.
“They’re all competitors. They’re ready. Hopefully things go our way. I believe that we can bring the cup back and so do a lot of the girls.
“I’ve done it before, so I know what to expect, and that helps.
“There are a few little bits and bobs that I didn’t feel I did as well as I should have done. But, on the whole, I felt I did a reasonable job, unfortunately, we just fell short.
“We didn’t hole enough putts, I don’t think. But that’s just the way it goes.
“The girls fought hard, and they played with their hearts, with passion, and I’m sure that they’ll do the same this week. All we need is a little bit of luck and a few more putts to drop.”
Nicholas’ opposite number, eight-time Solheim Cup team member Rosie Jones, is equally cofident ahead of the clash.
“I think both teams are very strong,” said Jones, in her first Solheim Cup as captain.
“There is a lot of depth on both sides.
“Any time you’re going overseas, you feel like you’re at a disadvantage because of the crowds and the amount of fans the Europeans can have, and the momentum that the Europeans can gain from those crowds.
“But we’re confident. We won here in 2007. We won here another time when I was on the team in 1996, and there is a possibility. There is always that possibility. But we don’t come in here, looking better on paper, assuming that we can win.
“We definitely know this is going to be a hard fight. Europe has probably one of the strongest teams they’ve had in a long time. We have a lot of respect for that.
“I have a lot of respect for Ali, and how she can captain the team, and I expect our players to fight very hard to get another win.”
JT Poston completes wire-to-wire victory at John Deere Classic
England’s Callum Tarren bogeyed two of his last four holes en route to a one-under 70 as he was forced to settle for equal-sixth place.
Adrian Meronk makes history for Poland as David Law celebrates Open berth
Meronk’s flying finish made him his country’s first winner on the DP World Tour.
Paul Casey becomes latest player to join LIV Golf series
He opted out of the inaugural Saudi International on the European Tour in 2019 citing concerns over the country’s human rights record.
Adrian Meronk has the edge as he aims to make Tour history for Poland
A third round of 68 at Mount Juliet means a one-shot advantage on a crowded leaderboard.
Shane Lowry birdies last four holes to make Irish Open cut
Jorge Campillo tops the leaderboard at the midway point.
Keith Pelley hits back at 16 players threatening DP World Tour with legal action
Pelley says the sanctions against players who competed in the first LIV Golf event are ‘proportionate’ and ‘fair’.
JT Poston takes two-shot lead at John Deere Classic
The 29-year-old also became the first player on record to open consecutive Tour events with 62 or better.
Ryan Fox surprised to be leading after opening round of Horizon Irish Open
The New Zealander carded a flawless 64 to set the pace at Mount Juliet.
Defiant Lee Westwood does not believe playing in LIV should harm Ryder Cup hopes
Westwood doesn’t agree with penalties and sanctions.
Shane Lowry welcomes closer ties between Tours in response to threat from LIV
The PGA Tour and DP World Tour announced the next phase of their strategic alliance.