Ladies European Tour Team Captain Trish Johnson hailed her “fabulous team” after they defeated the Australian Ladies Professional Golf tour by nine points to seven in the ‘Third Place Final’ at The Queens presented by Kowa in Japan.
The LET team won four and halved one of their eight singles matches at Miyoshi Golf Club near Nagoya in a nail biting finish which came down to the last match on Sunday.
After wins from LET players Georgia Hall, Catriona Matthew and Florentyna Parker and a half from the fifth match featuring Nanna Koerstz Madsen and Su-Hyun Oh, against wins from Sarah-Jane Smith, Cathryn Bristow and Whitney Hillier, the teams were tied on seven points each as the last match between Linda Wessberg and Stacey Keating came to the 18th hole.
One up with one to play, Wessberg made a par four on the last to deny Keating and Johnson said: “They put up a great fight at the end and made a lot of birdies. Fortunately Linda is made of stern stuff and I’m very relieved.”
“We were well up at the beginning and I’m not sure how it all came down to that, but fair play to the Australians. This is what they do, they fight all the way and their sporting history tells you that.”
First-time captain Johnson added: “I can honestly say it’s one of the best events I’ve ever been to. All the players will say what a pleasure it is to play in Japan. The crowds are just fantastic, so respectful and just lovely to play with and we’ve even got a couple of fans actually! I saw a few European flags, which was pretty strange! It was just wonderful organisation and we were treated so well. If anybody has not been here and played in The Queens presented by Kowa then believe me, you want to play in it. It’s just sensational.”
Scotland’s Catriona Matthew, who was playing in the tournament for the second year, won all three of her matches by defeating the ALPG Captain Rachel Hetherington and Johnson also mentioned Florentyna Parker’s stand-out performance, after her 5 and 4 victory over Sarah Kemp.
“She’s had a little bit of a tough week and just hasn’t holed any putts and I think today, she holed quite a few including a couple of monsters, so a 5 and 4 victory is very sweet,” said Johnson. “The whole team have performed admirably. You’ve got a mixture of young players and players that have never played before. Becky Morgan was incredibly unlucky. Every match she had went to 18 and I saw her hit so many good putts this week. A lot of the players maybe didn’t give it a go but she gave everything a go and not one of them went in. It’s just how it is, so she was incredibly unlucky. We’re pleased that she’s on the winning side, because she deserved to be. She’s a great player and most of all, they’ve all been an absolute pleasure to spend a week with.”
Third Place Final between LET and ALPG
Georgia Hall (LET) defeated Katherine Kirk 2 and 1
Catriona Matthew (LET) defeated Rachel Hetherington 2 up
Sarah Jane Smith (ALPG) defeated Nuria Iturrios 3 and 2
Cathryn Bristow (ALPG) defeated Isabelle Boineau 2 up
Nanna Koerstz Madsen (LET) halved with Su-Hyun Oh (ALPG)
Florentyna Parker (LET) defeated Sarah Kemp 5 and 4
Whitney Hillier (ALPG) defeated Becky Morgan (LET) 1 up
Linda Wessberg (LET) defeated Stacey Keating 1 up
Result: LET 9 points, ALPG 7 points
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