The R&A - Working for Golf

Countdown to Conwy for Ratcliffe

Elaine Ratcliffe, the Great Britain and Ireland Curtis Cup Captain, is hopeful home soil can aid her team’s bid for a memorable success in Wales later this month.

Ratcliffe has announced her selection of eight players to play the United States of America in the 41st Curtis Cup at Conwy Golf Club from 26-28 August.

First played in 1932 at Wentworth, the biennial team competition is contested by leading women amateur golfers and is regarded as one of the highlights of the golf calendar. Georgia Hall, Catriona Matthew, Jessica Korda and Stacy Lewis are among a host of top professionals who enjoyed the thrill of playing in the Curtis Cup in their amateur days.

English quartet selected

The GB&I side will be looking to emulate the winning form of the 2012 and 2016 teams, both victorious on home soil, as they bid to win back the historic trophy currently held by the USA after their dominant win at Quaker Ridge in 2018. 

English quartet Annabell Fuller, Charlotte Heath, Caley McGinty and Emily Toy have been named, along with Scottish duo Hannah Darling and Louise Duncan and Irish pair Annabel Wilson and Lauren Walsh.

The USA have failed to win across the Atlantic since 2008 and Ratcliffe hopes GB&I can again thrive.

“I’m just over the moon with the players that we've got,” said Ratcliffe. “Obviously it's been a trying year or so with the postponement (in 2020 due to Covid-19), but it has allowed for some players to come through who have been playing really well. The prospect of the match happening now feels very real. I’m fortunate to have a lot of winners on the team and we're hoping we can continue that momentum.”

Fuller confident

Fuller, who will make her second appearance in the event after her debut in 2018, hopes to use that experience – even if she is still only 19 years old. Conwy, founded in 1890, offers a wonderful links test on the north Wales coastline.

The 2020 English Women’s Open Amateur Stroke Play winner, who attends the University of Florida, said, “I know kind of what the USA team bring, and I think we're definitely capable of being better and beating them. I think we need to bring a strong drive, and I think we can do it.

“We’ve had a couple of trainings at Conwy. We were able to play a couple of rounds, which was really nice. The course can play a different format depending on the wind.

“I think it's a pretty good match play course, and I think we might – I dare say this – have the upper hand, knowing the links courses and having played practice rounds there.”

Darling delight

In-form Darling is the youngest player in the team and is delighted to have secured her debut.

The 18-year-old has enjoyed a superb summer including winning the St Rule Trophy, finishing runner-up at the Helen Holm Scottish Women’s Open Championship, and reaching the quarter-finals of The Women’s Amateur Championship and Scottish Women’s Amateur Championship.

Darling, joined by Women’s Amateur victor Duncan in the team, added, “It's a great honour. It's been something I've worked towards and dreamed of for quite a long time. I think when you're a young player in Britain, it's obviously something you strive for. Not many people get to achieve it, and you look at the people that do, they go on to do some great things.”

Fans will be able to attend the match at Conwy from the opening ceremony on Wednesday 25 August through to the conclusion of play on Saturday 28 August. Tickets are on sale on a first come, first served basis and must be pre-purchased prior to the 20 August by visiting www.randa.org