McKenna's team denied in Curtis Cup


Curtis Cup: The United States won the Curtis Cup for the 26th time today, beating  Britain & Ireland by 13 points to seven over the Old Course at St Andrews.

Carol Semple Thompson's team started the final day with a three-point lead (7.5-4.5) with the home captain Mary McKenna still cherishing hopes that her side, which had been hanging onto the Americans' coat-tails over the first two days, would come good in the eight singles matches today.

After two mild days, the Sunday weather certainly turned in favour of the home team - much colder, windier and occasionally wet.

But the odds on a home victory lengthened as the hosts were soon trailing in the top four singles and things did not get much better although, to be fair, the home tail did wag with wins by Florentyna Parker (Royal Birkdale) by 6 and 4 over Meghan Bolger and by home-course girl Krystle Caithness (St Regulus) by 2 and 1 over Mina Harigae.

Scottish champion Michele Thomson (McDonald Ellon) gained a creditable half with Jennie Lee.

Another Scot, Sally Watson (Elie & Earlsferry), came back from two down against Irish-born Alison Walshe in the final singles to be all square with five holes to play. But she lost the 16th and went down by one hole.

Watson, only 16, and 19-year-old Caithness were the top points-scorers for Britain and Ireland with three points each. Watson played in every session while Caithness, home for the summer from Georgia University, and playing over her home course, won all three ties in which she was played.

For the Americans, Stacy Lewis was the star with five wins out of five.

Galway-born Walshe, whose family emigrated to Boston when she was a youngster, was the second most successful player in the American squad after winning all four of her ties.