Different Strokes: Curtis Cup cohort lay down a Conwy marker

Lauren Walsh and Annabel Wilson fly the flag for Ireland in north Wales this week

Annabel Wilson is part of the British and Irish team for the Curtis Cup. Photograph: Jan Kruger/Getty

Annabel Wilson is part of the British and Irish team for the Curtis Cup. Photograph: Jan Kruger/Getty

 

Curtis Cup cohort lay down markers

No crystal balls needed to know that this week’s Curtis Cup - which takes place at Conwy in north Wales - will feature outstanding talent for this latest, delayed edition of the match between the Britain and Ireland team against holders United States.

As if to underscore how good these players are, members from the opposing teams left their marks on different sides of the Atlantic this past week: in Scotland, Louise Duncan claimed a top-10 finish (winning the Smyth Salver as leading amateur) in the AIG Women’s Open; and, in California, Gina Kim earned medalist honours at the first stage of the LPGA Tour qualifying school where former Curtis Cupper Olivia Mehaffey was also one of those to progress onwards to stage two in October.

Duncan’s route from Carnoustie to Conwy was rather more straightforward than Kim’s need to cross eight time zones.

And Duncan wasn ‘t alone in laying down an early marker with regard to form. Lauren Walsh, too, showed that her game is in great condition with a tied-42nd finish at the season’s final Major where the Co Kildare golfer’s first taste of the big time provided confirmation that she is headed in the right direction.

“The experience, even with the cameras, the crowds, I think it’s a big take away and something that hopefully I’ll be doing a lot more in the future . . . . I saw my game hold up against the best players in the world really. I’m happy where my game is at right now and it’s a huge confidence boost going forward and especially into the Curtis Cup,” said Walsh, one of two Irish players on the Britain and Ireland team along with Annabel Wilson.

Irish Open tees up Veerman

The multicultural Johannes Veerman can reflect on the week that changed his season - at the Irish Open - and now on the week that changed his career.

The 29-year-old American - of Indonesian and Dutch extraction - arrived in Mount Juliet last month on the back of two missed cuts in a run where he had missed six of nine weekends.

But a tied-third place finish in the Irish Open proved the catalyst of a rich run of form which saw him finished tied-eighth at the Scottish Open, 46th in the British Open and onwards to a breakthrough European Tour win in the Czech Republic: ranked 350th in the world before Mount Juliet, Veerman has jumped to a career high 106th in the latest global rankings.

Word of mouth

“It never gets old, that feeling that you lose it for a few years when you go through the motions on the European Tour and you don’t really get in contention and once you get in thtere, all those old feelings come up in you. As a sportsman, there’s no greater feeling than Sunday afternoon. It doesn’t really matter where it is. I got into it, I recognised myself and I haven’t seen that person for quite a while” - Thomas Bjorn on defeating Phillip Price in a playoff to win the Irish Legends at Rosapenna. It gave the great Dane a 22nd career win, his first since the Nedbank Challenge in 2013, and his first since turning 50 on the Legends Tour.

By the Numbers

3 - Rowan Lester has been give a sponsor’s invite into this week’s Omega European Masters at Crans sur Sierre, bringing the number of Irish players in the field to three alongside Cormac Sharvin and Jonathan Caldwell.

On this day

24th August 1975 - With players flagging in the severe heat, with temperatures reaching 38 degrees Celsius, Al Geiberger - two years before he would acquire the moniker of “Mr 59” for shooting the first sub-60 round on the PGA Tour - remained cool to claim the second edition of The Players at Colonial Country Club in Texas.

In the roasting conditions, Geiberger shot rounds of 66-68-67-69 for a total of 10-under-par 270, three shots clear of his nearest challenger Dave Stockton. Hubert Green, two shots further back on five-under, was the only other player in the field to finish below par, with the conditions reflected in Jack Nicklaus’s defence of his title finishing well adrift on seven-over.

Geiberge’s win, the second of the 1975 season and the seventh of his 11 career wins, earned him a payday of $50,000 which would prove to be the largest of his career.

Twitter Twaddle

The least Monday Monday of the year! 14-year-old me had a big dream and it’s been quite the journey since that ‘09 JR Solheim Cup but today we made history! So excited to represent @SolheimCupEuro #cantseecantbe - Leona Maguire with that positive Monday in posting a photo of her young teenage start to where she is now.

What a brilliant week we had @Rosapenna1893 and huge congrats to @thomasbjorngolf on terrific scoring. We look forward to returning next year and welcoming crowds to make an even better event. Thank you to all those who helped in getting this year’s brilliant event played - Tournament host Paul McGinley already looking forward to next year’s Irish Legends.

Disappointing week at Q-School. I shot 72-76-81 and won’t advance. Feeling a lot of things but mostly sad & exhausted. I know if it was easy, everyone would do it, but dang….golf kicks your ass sometimes.TY to those who reached out. I’ll get through this. Great things take time - American golfer Hannah Gregg on the torture of qualifying school.

In the Bag

Anna Nordqvist

AIG Women’s Open

Driver - Titleist TSi3 (10 degrees)

3-wood - Titleist TSi2 (15 degrees)

Hybrids - PXG 0317 Gen2 (19 and 22 degrees)

Irons - Titleist T100S (5-PW)

Wedges - Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (50, 54 and 58 degrees)

Putter - Swag Handsome Too

Ball - Titleist ProV1x

Know the Rules

Q - In attempting to gauge the strength of the wind, Player A retrieves a handkerchief from his pocket and proceeds to hold it in the air for the sole purpose of determining the wind’s impact and what direction it is blowing. Is he entitled to do this?

A - Under Rule 4.3a/1 (using artificial objects to get wind-related information is not allowed), Player A is in breach of the rules. Although Rule 4.3a(2) gives a single example of an artificial object not allowed to get wind related information (powder to assess wind direction), other artificial objects must not be used for the sole purpose of getting wind-related information.

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