Irish duo suffer defeat as US take two-point lead


CURTIS CUP DAY ONETHE IRISH duo of Leona Maguire and Stephanie Meadow suffered a disappointing opening day in the 37th Curtis Cup match at Nairn, Scotland, yesterday as Great Britain and Ireland again have to play catch-up – they trail by two points going into the second day.

Playing in the third foursomes match of the morning they were well beaten 5 and 4 by the US pairing of Lindy Duncan and Lisa McCloskey after being behind all the way.

The Americans birdied the opening three holes although Slieve Russell teenager Maguire and Meadow of Royal Portrush managed to halve the second.

But the Irish couple could not match their powerful rivals and they turned for home six down. They were able to prolong the game a little by taking the 11th and 12th but then a par three at the short 14th was sufficient to see the Americans home.

It was in fact a morning whitewash for the hosts as Kelly Tidy and Amy Boulden, two up early on, and Holly Clyburn and Bronte Law lost as well.

Captain Tegwen Matthews, who played in four Curtis Cup matches herself in the 1970s, omitted both Maguire and Meadow from the afternoon fourball session as Great Britain and Ireland battled to get back into the contest. However the pair have been recalled for this morning’s foursomes and they will again play together against the Americans who beat them five and four yesterday.

“We certainly did not make the sort of start we wanted but there is still a long way to go,” said the skipper at lunchtime.

And indeed the home players did begin the fightback from the middle of the afternoon just as it looked as though it could be a first-day whitewash. They were at one stage down in all games but then the 2010 British champion Tidy and her English international colleague Clyburn and Welsh champion Boulden and Law produced some inspirational golf to sweep to two vital successes. Boulden and Law were two under par in winning 3 and 2.

The top afternoon match was lost but with the two other games won the score had a respectability about it with the Americans leading 4-2 with a further six points at stake today and eight tomorrow.

FIRST-DAY RESULTS(Great Britain and Ireland names first) – Foursomes: K Tidy and A Boulden lost to A Ernst and B Pancacke one hole; H Clyburn and B Law lost to A Anderson and T Lua 21; L Maguire and S Meadow lost to L Duncan and L McCloskey 54.

Fourballs: P Pretswell and C Hull lost to Anderson and E Tubert 43; Tidy and Clyburn beat Pancacke and E Popson 21; Law and Boulden beat Duncan and McCloskey 32.

Day one position: Great Britain and Ireland 2 USA 4.