Captain Tegwen Matthews, who will lead her team in defence of the Curtis Cup this year, has welcomed the introduction of a new approach to selecting the 8 players who will represent Great Britain & Ireland at the 38th staging of the Match against the USA at St Louis Country Club, Missouri, from 6-8 June.
This follows the LGU’s decision to move away from more traditional team selection methods, and instead place reliance on the World Amateur Golf Rankings (“WAGR”) and the LGU Order of Merit for most of the team places.
LGU Chairman Trish Wilson explained “Increasingly, the top players are competing around the world rather than just in Great Britain & Ireland, so it is more difficult for selectors to watch them in action. In addition, the players themselves have been asking for more information on how they can position themselves for consideration for a Curtis Cup place.”
For this year’s Curtis Cup, the team will comprise:-
- The top 4 players on WAGR;
- The top 2 players on the LGU Order of Merit not already selected from WAGR; and
- 2 players chosen through more traditional selection methods.
The cut-off point for automatic selections will be the end of the last LGU Order of Merit event before the Match, namely, the Welsh Open Stroke Play Championship on 4 May. The team will be announced on 6 May.
Selectors from the four home countries will continue to make a contribution, proportionate to the need to select 2 of the 8 team members.
The Chairman said: “We recognise there remains some merit in checking on certain individual players in a competitive situation, so while the use of selectors will be much less than in the past, they may be asked, on occasion, to attend an event and report back on a player’s performance. This places players, and not pre-determined golf championships, at the heart of the selection activity.”
In a further change, the LGU has designated one of its Directors, Sheena McElroy, as Chairman of International Teams. She will be responsible for liaising closely with the Team Captain, co-ordinating any activity of the selectors in relation to the 2 players they will chose, and chairing the meeting at the beginning of May at which these 2 players will be selected.
Team Captain Tegwen Matthews said: “This new selection process introduces a greater level of clarity and fairness and will be welcomed by the players. They’ll know what they have to do to play their way onto the Curtis Cup team! I believe my remit is to lead and inspire whatever team I have to perform to their best, and beyond anything they have ever done before, and to have the same passion about retaining the Curtis Cup that I have.”
Ladies’ Golf Union www.lgu.org