The European Women’s Team of Mel Reid and Carlota Ciganda are looking forward to taking on Team USA, represented by Daniel Im and David Lipsky, in the first match of the GolfSixes at 10.52am tomorrow.
The European duo, who hold 11 titles between them, are no strangers to playing together in The Solheim Cup and they claimed a half point against Cristie Kerr and Lexi Thompson in 2015. They also played together in 2017, when they were beaten by the ‘killer Bs’ Brittany Lincicome and Brittany Lang.
Reid, a three-time Solheim Cup player who was part of the victorious 2011 team, said: “It’s great to play in an event as big as this and it’s a great opportunity for the women’s game, so hopefully we can win some matches. When we play together, it’s usually against the US and we always like to beat the US, so it’s a perfect match for the first game!”
The pair will then go out against the defending champions, Lucas Bjerregard and Thorbjørn Oleson from Denmark at 12:32, followed by Thailand, represented by Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Thongchai Jaidee, at 15:17.
Ciganda, also a three-time Solheim Cup player and a member of the victorious 2013 side, said: “I can’t wait! It will be great to play with the men and some of my good friends on tour.”
Both players love the 6-hole greensomes format, although Ciganda joked that she might struggle with the shot-clock on the fourth hole. She said: “It’s going to be fun: fast and furious, I don’t know what to expect: lots of fun, music and a shot clock on the fourth hole that I’m going to struggle with a little bit! I will try to be as quick as possible!”
Reid added: “I think the game of golf needs to move forward with the times and it’s like 2020 cricket, which has rejuvenated cricket. I think formats like this will get people interested in golf. People don’t have five hours on a Saturday anymore to play 18 holes, so this will encourage more people to play the game.”
Regarding their own chances of success in the 16-team event, Ciganda said: “There are some great players here, so it’s not going to be easy, but in match play over six holes anything can happen. We will do everything we can to win this trophy.”
Reid said: “We are not expected to win, any of the women’s teams, but you never know, we could be the dark horses and it’s nice that there’s no expectations on us. If we could win it would be incredible for women’s golf and hopefully people will pay attention to women’s golf, no matter what, after this week.”