It’s been another remarkable season for Catriona Matthew, and she is planning to carry on the good work at the fifth and final major of the season, the Evian Championship starting in France today.
The only Scot in the field – the other four Britons are Charley Hull, Laura Davies, Jodi Ewart Shadoff and amateur Bronte Law – Matthew is still enjoying the afterglow of the Rio Olympics.
It was one of her remaining career ambitions to make Team GB and she said: “It really was a wonderful experience. It’s great to have done it.”
In the top 40 on the LPGA money list with over £250,000 in season’s earnings, the North Berwick 47-year-old has had a good run in the majors this year, most notably a top five at the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Woburn in July.
Evian has not been too happy a hunting ground over the years, but she has set a target “anything in the 60s in the first round”. But, as with everyone else in the field, she is concerned by the weather forecast.
While the practice rounds were played in 25 degree heat and perfect calm conditions, the expectation is for terrible weather in the first round and not much better for the other three.
Matthew’s husband, Graeme, is caddying this week, while their two daughters are at school back home with the grandparents. The girls are now nine and seven and it is hard for Catriona to juggle a life on the road with family commitments.
“It was fine when they were wee because they came with us,” she said. “But as they get older they are doing so many things and I miss a lot.” Graeme now spends most of his time at home.
Lydia Ko, the New Zealand 19-year-old, defends the title and is chasing her second major of the year. She won the ANA Inspirational in March. The world No 1 was the silver medallist in Rio.
South Korea’s Inbee Park, the Olympic champion, is missing the event due to a recurrence of a thumb injury.