Suzann Pettersen apologises for Solheim Cup drama

‘I have learned a valuable lesson about what is truly important in this great game of golf’

Suzann Pettersen of the European Team reacts as she almost holes a bunker shot on the 13th hole in her match against Angela Stanford during the final day singles matches in the 2015 Solheim Cup. Photograph: David Cannon/Getty Images

Suzann Pettersen of the European Team reacts as she almost holes a bunker shot on the 13th hole in her match against Angela Stanford during the final day singles matches in the 2015 Solheim Cup. Photograph: David Cannon/Getty Images

 

Suzann Pettersen has apologised for her refusal to concede a short putt to US opponent Alison Lee during the Solheim Cup.

The incident on Sunday morning caused tears on both sides - with their morning fourballs all square, rookie Lee, 20, mistakenly believed her 16-inch putt at the 17th had been conceded by the European pair and when she scooped the ball up, the match referee had no choice but to award the hole to Hull and Pettersen.

Petterson insisted that the hole had not been conceded - even after her playing partner Charley Hull had made way for the 18th.

Europe were awarded the hole - and they won the match - but America went on to win the tournament outright after a remarkable showing in the singles.

US captain Juli Inkster didn’t hold back when addressing the incident; “BS. No way they can ever justify that. It’s just not right. You just don’t do that to your peers.”

Petterson’s statement, via her instagram account on Monday morning, was her first time to comment on the matter.

“I’ve never felt more gutted and truly sad about what went down Sunday on the 17th at the Solheim Cup,” she wrote.

“I am so sorry for not thinking about the bigger picture in the heat of the battle and competition. I was trying my hardest for my team and put the single match and the point that could be earned ahead of sportsmanship and the game of golf itself! I feel like I let my team down and I am sorry.

“To the US team, you guys have a great leader in Juli , who I’ve always looked up to and respect so much. Knowing I need to make things “right,” I had a face to face chat with her before leaving Germany this morning to tell her in person how I really feel about all of this. I wanted her also to know that I am sorry.

“I hope in time the US team will forgive me and know that I have learned a valuable lesson about what is truly important in this great game of golf which has given me so much in my life.

“To the fans of golf who watched the competition on TV, I am sorry for the way I carried myself. I can be so much better and being an ambassador for this great game means a lot to me.

“The Solheim Cup has been a huge part of my career. I wish I could change Sunday for many reasons. Unfortunately I can’t.

“This week I want to push forward toward another opportunity to earn the Solheim Cup back for Europe in the right way. And I want to work hard to earn back your belief in me as someone who plays hard, plays fair and plays the great game of golf the right way.”

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