The 42nd Curtis Cup Match gets underway on Friday afternoon, at the historic Merion GC in Pennsylvania.
Castlewarden’s Lauren Walsh is the only Irish player on the Great Britain and Ireland team, as the 21-year-old makes her second appearance in the famous match.
Walsh was part of the team that lost to USA last year in Wales, and she has told Golf Ireland she hopes her time in Merion will end on a happier note.
“It’s been a brilliant experience so far. The golf course is spectacular. We have a great team with some of the team returning from Conwy last year. The new girls are gelling great too.”
A student at Wake Forest in North Carolina, Walsh is used to the American conditions, but she says the GB&I team have settled in well at the course that has hosted five US Men’s Opens.
“We’ve been made so welcome by everyone in Merion. They are treating us like royalty. It’s a spectacular golf course with some brilliant history. It’s a tricky test. It’s the thickest rough I’ve ever played from. The week will all be about hitting the fairways.”
Walsh becomes the fifth Irish player since the turn of the millennium to play in multiple Curtis Cups, following in the footsteps of Claire Coughlan, Leona Maguire, Stephanie Meadow and Olivia Mehaffey.
“I’ve had a lot of messages of support from home. My dad and my sister have traveled over which is brilliant too. I know everyone at home is behind us too!”
Walsh has been picked to play in the opening session and will team up with England’s Caley McGinty to play the American duo of Amari Avery and Megha Ganne. The match tees off at 12.42pm Irish time.
You can watch Day 1 of the Curtis Cup live on YouTube.