Winning a first major is enough to get you giddy. To achieve that feat 11 weeks after giving birth is positively head-spinning stuff. “It was a bit of blur that whole week,” admitted Catriona Matthew as she reflected on achieving that very feat nine years ago in the Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham, where the event returns next week.
“At the time, I just got on with it. It was 11 weeks after (second child) Sophie was born. But you just did what was required, feeding and all that. It all passed in a blur. You look back and think ‘that was quite amazing’.”
The week before Matthew and her husband, Graeme, had escaped a hotel fire during the Evian Masters in France. “That was my first week back after giving birth,” she added. “I just went to the Open with no expectations and no pressure on myself. It’s hard to do that every week, though. That was almost a one-off.”
The 48-year-old has recorded three top-10 finishes in the event since then but has been waiting patiently for this one to come around. “I’ve never been back to Lytham. Amazing to think the British has never been back either,” she said.
“Graeme is going to caddie again and come out of retirement. It will be great. Any time you get to go back to a course where you’ve had success is special. The fact is was my first major makes it even more special.”