NAIRN, Scotland— Britain-Ireland rallied past the United States on Sunday to win the Curtis Cup, ending the Americans’ 16-year domination of the tournament.
The outcome means that for the first time all four major professional and amateur men’s and women’s team trophies are held by Britain, Ireland and Europe.
Britain-Ireland beat the Americans 10 ½ to 9 ½ despite needing to win five of the eight singles matches Sunday. Stephanie Meadow of Northern Ireland scored the critical point by defeating Amy Anderson.
Britain-Ireland and Europe now hold the Curtis Cup, men’s amateur Walker Cup plus the pro Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup titles.
“It is very, very special to have captured golfing history today,” Britain-Ireland captain Tegwen Matthews said. “I had joked and joked to the team about all the pressure they were under to win this week given that it would mean holding all four main team trophies between GB & I and Europe against the States.
“So that was a challenge for me and it’s just fabulous we’ve won because I am just as competitive as my players in wanting to achieve that goal and we have managed to do that.”
This was only the second time the team won in Scotland in the 80-year history of the event.
Britain-Ireland captured the opening three matches — Kelly Tidy beating Austin Ernst 2 and 1, Amy Boulden beating Emily Tubert 3 and 1 and Holly Clyburn beating Erica Popson 3 and 2.
It put Britain-Ireland ahead for the first time in the event by 8 ½ points to 6 ½. While it lost the next two matches — Lisa McCloskey beating Pam Pretswell 4 and 3 and Tiffany Lau beating Bronte Law 2 up — the home team sealed the victory by winning the next two matches.
England’s 16-year old Charley Hull sent her team to 9 ½ points by defeating Lindy Duncan 5 and 3 before Meadow clinched the winning point in defeating Anderson 4 and 2.
No. 4-ranked Leona Maguire of Ireland lost the final singles match 6 and 5 despite a recent run of good form that included a recent eight-shot victory in the Irish U-18 Girls Open Stroke-Play Championship.
“It was certainly not the result I was looking for,” U.S. captain Pat Cornett said. “So I am a little disappointed, but then the result is good for the game and good for the Curtis Cup. Then it just shows how fickle this game can be and I reminded the girls that after all it is just a game.”
Cornett’s leg is in a cast and she will head home to California for an operation on her left ankle. She broke two bones in a golf-cart accident Friday. Her husband, Mike, remains in an Inverness hospital because of cellulitis in his feet.
“It’s now a case of we can’t get out of Dodge City quick enough,” Cornett cracked.
Cornett has yet to decide if she will try to captain the 2016 U.S. team in St. Louis.