THE odds are stacked against the Great Britain & Ireland women’s team that takes on their American counterparts in the Curtis Cup starting in St Louis on Friday.
A side that includes two Scots – Eilidh Briggs and Gemma Dryburgh – is attempting to win the biennial bout on American soil for the first time since 1986, when the GB&I ranks contained the likes of Belle Robertson and Mary McKenna.
A tartan quartet comprising Catriona Matthew, Mhairi McKay, Janice Moodie and Myra McKinlay helped secure a draw in Chattanooga 20 years ago but the four subsequent trips across the Atlantic have all ended in defeat. On paper, this GB&I team does not look as strong as the one that recovered brilliantly from losing the opening session 3-0 to record a memorable victory at Nairn two years ago.
That side had big personalities in Amy Boulden, Holly Clyburn, Kelly Tidy and Charley Hull, the latter, of course, having since become part of a triumphant European team on US soil in the Solheim Cup.
It remains to be seen if there are figures like them this time around but Tegwen Matthews, the winning captain in Nairn, will certainly be happy to have two survivors from that side – world No 7 Stephanie Meadows and Bronte Law.
Playing on American soil is not the daunting prospect it once was for GB&I teams, especially with so many of our leading players at college over there, so use Nairn as inspiration girls and get that first win over there in 28 years.