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Europe victorious at Killeen Castle

Europe have claimed one of the biggest prizes in Ladies golf for the first time in eight years with victory at the Solheim Cup.

Image: Peter Morrison/AP/Press Association Images

A BATTLING DISPLAY from Alison Nicholas’ charges saw Europe claim the Solheim Cup by two points (15-13) in County Meath on Sunday evening.

With five rookies amongst the ranks, the odds were always against the home team once they faced into the final day level with their opponents.

Europe were given a point’s advantage when it was confirmed that injury would prevent Crisie Kerr from playing her game against Karen Stupples and they were given a further boost when Catriona Matthew won her singles encounter against Paula Creamer by 6&5.

Sophie Gustafson and Morgan Pressel claimed a point apiece for their sides – despite some awful weather in the locality – before some excellent putting saw Laura Davies half her game with Juli Inkster.

The Americans claimed three more points through Vicky Hurst, Brittany Lang and Christina Kim and it was only on the back of late fightbacks from Irish Open champion Suzann Pettersen and Caroline Hedwall, who was still an amateur golfer just a few months ago, that Europe were finally able to build some momentum.

Pettersen carded birdies on her final three holes to secure a narrow win over Michelle Wie, while Dutch golfer Hedwall played some superb golf to force a half with US rookie Ryann O’Toole after being two down with two holes remaining.

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With Spaniard Azahara Munoz ahead in her match against Angela Stanford, it fell to Pettersen – who claimed her Irish title at Killeen Castle just a short few months ago – to hole the vital putt and seal the famous victory.

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