Despite not having the best season of her career in 2017, first-time Solheim Cup vice captain Catriona Matthew still has hopes of representing Europe on the course, as well as off it.
Matthew currently sits in 27th position on the Ladies European Tour Solheim Cup points list but has played all of her golf on the LPGA Tour this season. However, her best result this year is a tie for 30th at the HSBC Women’s Champions.
The Scot will need a strong fortnight in her native homeland and will have to rely on her experience of winning the Scottish Open twice and the British Open if she is to stand any chance of representing the team as a player.
“I feel as though I'm playing well,” Matthew said. “My game has come around in the last month. Maybe just haven't produced the scores yet. Hopefully (I can) get a good couple of tournaments.
“I think I've played enough myself that I know I've got to produce a good couple of weeks here. Obviously, it depends on a lot of factors and who qualifies and how other people play. We'll just need to wait and see what happens these two weeks.
“I just know I've got to go out there and play pretty well, just like the other ones do. At the end of the day, it comes down to results, perhaps a little bit of experience, helping on my part a little. I think it just depends perhaps on the makeup of the team.”
Matthew, who holed the winning putt at the 2003 Solheim Cup at Barsebäck Golf and Country Club, Sweden, also told of the benefits of the ladies playing the same course as the men, as their Scottish Open was held at Dundonald Links just two weeks ago.
“I think with the way Aberdeen have it, where it's following the men's, the same courses, that really raises the profile for the ladies' game. And obviously it will be great to see it at Gullane next year. So yes, it's very exciting for the tournament,” Matthew added.
This is a view shared by fellow European teammate Suzann Pettersen who is set to make her ninth appearance for Team Europe at this year’s Solheim Cup.
“I think it's always fun to watch the men play if it's a course that you know,” Pettersen said. “You can refer a little bit to your own experience and kind of you know the green areas, you know the tee shots. Obviously, it's a little different what they see than what we see from where they tee it up from but, from that point I think it's fantastic to see.
“The guys just played Birkdale and we were there just three years ago. You kind of feel like you know the course very well, and you know the challenge right on the first tee shot. You can refer to kind of what they are facing, which is the fun part to see the best male players playing courses that we play.”
Pettersen and Matthew have a combined 15 appearances between them and have picked up an incredible 35 points for their team, but Matthew will need a week reminiscent of the men’s Scottish Open winner Rafa Cabrera Bello if she is to stand any chance of an eighth appearance.