VCI European Ladies Golf Cup
La Sella Golf Resort, Spain 3-6 April 2008
Thursday 3rd April 2008
Round one leader quotes with the following teams: England, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Scotland and Wales.

Team England (Trish Johnson and Rebecca Hudson)
How many birdies did you have?

Rebecca Hudson: Eight. I had two (holes 18 and 6). Trish had the rest. Trish played great, she was very steady.

What were the tactics?
Trish Johnson: Rely on Rebecca!

Did that blow the cobwebs away?
Trish Johnson: Yes, I think we both just played very well, from start to finish. We holed a few putts here and there and it’s always nice to be at the top of the leader board.

I think you said it was the first time you had played together. How did you gel?
Trish Johnson: Perfectly, to be fair. We weren’t in too much trouble. I was in trouble a couple of times and Rebecca made great pars which were really saving pars because our momentum was really up and had we bogeyed a hole, in four ball better ball, you really do take a knock back. I think it worked great.

From your point of view Rebecca as well?
Rebecca Hudson: We gelled very well together with the worst score being a par on a hole. You can’t really complain at that. There were a couple of nice putts for birdies and pars.

A great way to finish.
Rebecca Hudson: Very good, yes. I actually holed a putt, which was nice.

What have you been doing over the winter?
Rebecca Hudson: I had some time off with a back injury which took a while to get over. It was a great start to the season. I’ve only
been at home two weeks and now we’re here.

Are you still working behind bars?
Rebecca Hudson: I’m still working at Mount Pleasant in the winter. It makes you realise that we are lucky to be out here.

Trish tomorrow the format is very different but you said the plan was to get to the top of the leader board and you’re right there.
Trish Johnson: I’m a great believer in the fact that if you are at the top of the leader board everybody else has got to catch you. Some people don’t like being there but they have got to shoot a lower score than you have every day to try and get past you. That was our aim for today; we’ve done very well, but there is a long way to go so we’ll see how it pans out tomorrow with this new format. I’m not really sure what will be a good score tomorrow but the way we’re playing, if we keep playing like that, we’ve got every chance.
Rebecca Hudson: We’re both playing nicely. We’ll go out and play good golf again and see what we can do.
Trish Johnson: We had a very good day. We didn’t make any bogeys which you shouldn’t do in four ball better ball.

Do you enjoy playing as a team?
Rebecca Hudson: Any time you get to represent your country you love it.

Can you tell us about the 18th?
Rebecca Hudson: It was a nice hole. I had 70 yards in to about 10 foot and it was a straight putt so it just rolled in.

Did you speak a lot on the course?
Trish Johnson: Not really. The only thing we did do was Rebecca read most of my putts and surprise, surprise: I holed quite a few today. So either I need glasses or I need to sort out my green reading. Apart from that we just played our own game. On the greens it’s good to have a positive thought when you know what line you’re trying to hit. That worked very well.
Rebecca Hudson: If you have a bit of confidence over a putt you can just put such a better stroke on it and just believe it if there are two voices saying, “Yes, that is the right line.”

Do you understand the Valencian Cup format?
Trish Johnson: Yes I understand it. I’m not sure about it but I understand it. It’s hard to figure out what will be a good score tomorrow with that sort of format. I would imagine somewhere about four under for the day would be fairly good. It is foursomes but it’s a nicer sort of format.

Team Belgium (Ellen Smets and Lara Tadiotto)
What worked well for you today?

Ellen Smets: It was a good switch, which you need in this format.
Lara Tadiotto: I putted very well. I made six birdies and when I missed a few holes Ellen was making some good pars. It was a good combination and we had fun.

How was the condition of the course?
Lara Tadiotto: It was perfect. Good greens and it was tough when you pass the 12th hole you have four really tough holes – 13, 14, 15, 16. If you don’t play them well you can have a bad round just because of four holes. Some holes are long and some and some are pretty short so you can attack and you have to think. You have to play straight most of the time so it’s a good course.

How does it feel to be the clubhouse leader?
Ellen Smets: We still have three days to go so anything can happen.
Lara Tadiotto: The format tomorrow will be interesting and its going to be tough for everybody. It will be fun but you have to rely on your partner. It’s totally different to what we are used to playing.
Ellen Smets: We are really looking forward to it actually.

What is the plan for tomorrow?
Ellen Smets: It’s a secret! We will just see. I was just making my pars so she could really go for it.
Lara Tadiotto: Ellen made the pars and I had four metres, six metres. I knew I could attack, believe in the line and charge it. There was no pressure at all. Ellen was lining me up and I could just go.
Ellen Smets: It was a really good team and of course I felt much more comfortable when I saw that her putter was hot.

How many women golf professionals are there in Belgium?
Lara Tadiotto: We are the only two playing on tour and there is another one who went to the qualifying school but she missed it. There are about 15 girls teaching who are not playing.
Ellen Smets: I teach in Flanders Nipon but I play for LGCC.
Lara Tadiotto: I teach at the Royal Golf Club of Belgium.

Do you enjoy playing for your country?
Lara Tadiotto: Actually it’s really good because as you know we don’t have a government for a long time. There are a lot of big problems with the politicians because one part is French and the other one is Flemish. She is from the Flemish part and I am from the French. In sport there is no difference and we proved that today. It would be good for the country to do the same instead of losing energy on the wrong things. It is such a small country.

Where do you both live?
Lara Tadiotto: I live I Brussels and Ellen lives in Hasselt.
Ellen Smets: We are looking forward to tomorrow. We had two practise round together at home. We couldn’t really practise much because it was still snowing at home last week.

Team Denmark (Iben Tinning and Lisa-Holm Sorensen)
What was the key to your success today?

Lisa-Holm Sorensen: I think it was our putting. We trusted our partners. We has seven birdies and one bogey unfortunately. It is good considering it is our first time playing together.
Iben Tinning: I think we feel pretty comfortable out there and we are enjoying being here so we will just keep things going. If it keeps going like this we might win or if it doesn’t then who cares! We are both playing well so I think it’s going to be a lot of fun tomorrow.

Did you have a hip replacement?
Iben Tinning: No, I had an operation at the end of January so I have been practicing and working hard with the physio to get it better. I haven’t really been walking until this week. I was in Dubai but I was driving around because the doctor said I should save it. I feel alright. I’m not even tired in the hip. Sometimes I can feel it but the turning and the swing is a lot better.

Team Germany (Martina Eberl and Anja Monke)
What was the key?

Anja Monke: We played quite well as a team. If I took time off Martina played well. We were matching quite well and holing some nice putts.
Martina Eberl: We never had a birdie on the same hole. I think Anja had more but sometimes she holed out from unexpected positions.

Do you think you can overtake Belgium?
Martina Eberl: Yes. We just need to play better and hole more putts.

Do you understand the new Valencian Cup format?
Martina Eberl: I think so. We are not too blonde for that. I think we can manage. We have good caddies with us that will watch out.

Team Scotland (Clare Queen and Lynn Kenny)
How do you feel about your score today?

Clare Queen: we’re a little bit disappointed because we played well on the front nine but it was a bit scrappy on the back nine. The trouble is with this format that if you both bogey the same holes then you drop shots. We dropped a few on the back nine.
Lynn Kenny: You can’t do it.
Clare Queen: We had a lot of putts that didn’t drop some we can come back from it.
Lynn Kenny: I think for the first tournament for six weeks it wasn’t a bad start. We both played mostly good shots. I think for the rest of the week it bodes well.

Team Wales (Eleanor Pilgrim and Lydia Hall)
Lydia Hall: We’ve been playing well this morning. We were steady on the front nine and missed a few fairways on the back nine. We pushed a few into the trees and didn’t recover. I feel positive for tomorrow.
Of course we are confident. We are in good spirits and me and El are getting on really well. I think we’re positive about getting a good score tomorrow and steadying the boat a bit.

Can you talk about the conditions and how they perhaps changed?
Lydia Hall: The first two days the wind was playing right on the first and then it changed and now it’s back to how it was. I think the course is playing a bit more difficult with the wind where it is today.

This is quite a big event for you to play as a rookie, isn’t it?
Lydia Hall: I had a bit of luck. Brew is out in America so I wish her well. It was good to meet El because we’ve never crossed paths before. It should be good fun.

Eleanor, what are your thoughts on the round?
Eleanor Pilgrim: We started okay and a lack of concentration, and a lack of course management, we didn’t make the birdies that we should have. To be honest, there are three days left and I know we’re not sitting very good at the minute but we’re very positive we can turn it around.