Suzann Pettersen lands ‘dream’ job as Solheim Cup captain
Suzann Pettersen admits she has some “big shoes to fill” after landing her dream role as Europe’s Solheim Cup captain.
Pettersen has made nine appearances as a player in the biennial contest, most famously being a controversial wild card selection by captain Catriona Matthew in 2019, holing the winning putt on the 18th green at Gleneagles and then immediately announcing her retirement.
The two-time major winner was also one of Matthew’s vice-captains as Europe retained the trophy with just a second win on American soil in Toledo in September and has now been handed the task of securing an unprecedented hat-trick of victories in Spain in 2023.
“It’s a dream come true to be able to captain the European team,” Pettersen told the PA news agency.
“I was just so honoured. It’s been a huge part of my career and obviously a new chapter now leading the way. I was told a few weeks ago and I’m excited to be able to share the news with my friends and the rest of the golfing world.
“I was hoping I was going to get a chance. Catriona did a fantastic job at Gleneagles, she did a fantastic job defending it in Toledo, winning away from home and now handing it over to me going for three in a row.
“She’s leaving some big shoes to fill to be quite honest. It’s a big task, a big challenge but like the way I played I’m going to give it my heart and soul and hopefully I’ll be able to get the best team together to give it a good solid try.
“I was hoping she (Matthew) was going to go for three in a row, it’s always fun when you try to break records, but I think the energy we can take from the previous two wins is valuable experience for the team.”
Pettersen made her Solheim Cup debut in 2002 and was an ever-present in the side until a back injury forced her out of the 2017 contest just two days before play was due to get under way.
Two years earlier, the 40-year-old Norwegian had been at the centre of controversy in Germany after insisting she would not have conceded a short putt mistakenly picked up by one of her opponents, Alison Lee.
Spurred on by the incident, the United States recovered from 10-6 down heading into the singles to win by a single point.
“I love it because it spices up the normal routine as a golfer and at the same time I’ve had some of the highest highs and biggest lows in the Solheim,” Pettersen added.
“You go into it with your heart and soul and whether you win the match or lose the match it involves emotions all the way through the spectrum.
“You have the biggest stage in women’s sport and feel fortunate that you are one out of 12 to be able to team up and unite with your friends and competitors that you normally play against.
“The bonding and the team work means you don’t just fight for yourself, you fight for your friends and play for them and it’s just a different mentality.”
Matt Wallace one stroke behind lead after first day of PGA Memorial in Ohio
Matt Wallace and Danny Willett are sitting second and equal-third respectively after the first day of the Memorial.
I don’t think LIV golfers should be on European Ryder Cup team – Rory McIlroy
American players remain eligible despite being banned or resigning from the PGA Tour in the wake of joining the Saudi-funded circuit.
Brendan Lawlor and Kim Moore excited for next week’s Scandinavian Mixed event
The pair won the men’s and women’s titles at the G4D Open at Woburn earlier this month.
Emiliano Grillo claims second PGA tour title in Texas
It was Emiliano Grillo’s first PGA Tour win in over seven years.
Pablo Larrazabal to follow Miguel Angel Jimenez after KLM Open win in forties
Larrazabal celebrated the milestone by winning his ninth DP World Tour title and second in just four weeks.
Harry Hall bounces back from double blow to keep share of lead
Cornish rookie heads into final round tied at the top with American Adam Schenk.
Harry Hall opens three-stroke halfway lead at Charles Schwab Challenge
The Cornish rookie is chasing his first PGA Tour win after opening round of 62.
England’s Harry Hall takes three-shot lead in Texas with career-best outing
He picked up eight birdies without dropping a shot and managed to save par from 15 and 30 feet.
Victor Perez to defend KLM Open title in race for Ryder Cup place
Perez has moved into the automatic qualifying places for the European Ryder Cup team.
Michael Block in no rush to return to reality any time soon after US PGA heroics
Block almost stole the show from winner Brooks Koepka at Oak Hill, making a hole-in-one during the final round.