Debutant Leona Maguire starred as Europe retained the Solheim Cup with a hard-fought 15-13 victory over the United States in Ohio.

Maguire gained her singles match on Sunday to finish an unbeaten week during which she collected 4 and a half factors from her 5 matches – a file for a rookie – and set the tone for an exciting victory.

Matilda Castren’s winning putt on the 18th sparked an outpouring of emotion amongst the Europeans, who have been thought of rank outsiders in the build-up to the match, having gained simply as soon as beforehand in the US.

By the time Emily Pedersen gained Monday’s remaining singles match, the celebrations have been in full swing.

Chants of “Beany we love you” reverberated round Inverness Golf Club as the small however loud visiting contingent lauded Catriona Matthew, with the Scot the first European captain to win the competitors twice after the memorable win at Gleneagles in 2019.

“It’s just unbelievable. My team have been so fantastic all week,” Matthew, 52, informed Sky Sports.

“I’m so happy with them. We knew it was going to be robust with only a handful of European followers. They hung in and got here out with an incredible end yesterday. It was an incredible begin after which obtained a bit of dodgy.

“It was nerve-wracking. We obtained three and a half [points] out of the first 4 after which the tide was turning.”

Maguire’s eye-catching present

Matthew was a veteran participant in Europe’s solely earlier win on American soil in Colorado in 2013 however this time round their success was underpinned by a debutant in the form of Maguire, the first Irishwoman to play in the occasion.

The 26-year-old introduced herself in wonderful type on the 17th staging of the biennial match, winning three and a half factors from the 4 matches she contested on the opening two days.

And she claimed the first point in Monday’s 12 singles matches with an emphatic 5&4 win over beforehand unbeaten Jennifer Kupcho, who had gained two and a half factors from three matches.

It strengthened the customer’s already robust in a single day place, transferring Europe 10-7 forward, and contributed to making sure that the big galleries of house supporters had little to get enthusiastic about.

Maguire, who was the solely participant from both aspect to characteristic in all 5 matches, recorded 4 and a half factors total, a file for a rookie.

Her crushing win over Kupcho additionally noticed her change into solely the third participant in Solheim Cup historical past to earn her crew greater than 4 factors in a single competitors.

“The purpose was to get my point. I’ve given it my absolute all this week, I could not have given something extra,” Maguire stated.

“I knew I used to be going to must play some actually good golf to beat her [Jennifer Kupcho]. I obtained off to an incredible begin; an eagle on two actually set me up.

“I holed some really nice putts, and just really kept my foot down all day. Never in my wildest dreams did I think the week was going to go this way. It has been an honour to represent Europe.”

A fraught finale

Catriona Matthew (left) is the first European captain to win the Solheim Cup twice

Madelene Sagstrom and Celine Boutier edged Matthew’s aspect nearer to their goal of 14 factors wanted to retain the trophy as defending champions.

But American wins for world primary Nelly Korda, Brittany Altomare and Megan Khang threatened a dramatic turnaround.

It made for some uncomfortable viewing for European followers, with the hosts at one stage main in 5 of seven remaining matches out on the course.

But Anna Nordqvist and Nanna Koerstz Madsen performed their half, incomes halves in rollercoaster encounters with Lexi Thompson and Austin Ernst earlier than Finland’s Castren held her nerve to gap a six-foot putt on the 18th to seal the essential 14th point.

And with Pedersen attending to 4 up with 4 to play at nearly the identical time, and thus guaranteeing a minimum of one other half point, Europe may rejoice winning the match.

United States captain Pat Hurst conceded their defeat was all the way down to their poor begin in Saturday’s opening foursomes matches, a format during which the Europeans have historically dominated.

“I think we got behind the eight-ball the very first foursomes,” she stated.

“I hoped to see plenty of pink in the starting simply to form of put it up on the board for everybody to see, however it’s what it’s.

“They performed onerous, they performed with coronary heart, and that is what we have been asking for.”

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Singles scores at Solheim CupFinal score

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