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Europe lead Solheim Cup despite Nordqvist and Van Dam collapse

Morgan Pressel and Marina Alex fought back to claim a vital point for the United States.

Anna Nordqvist and Anne Van Dam
Anna Nordqvist and Anne Van Dam

By Phil Casey, PA Golf Correspondent

Europe maintained their one-point lead on a windswept second day of the Solheim Cup despite an extraordinary collapse from Anna Nordqvist and Anne Van Dam at Gleneagles.

Nordqvist and Van Dam, the only new foursomes pairing selected by captain Catriona Matthew, were four up after six holes against Morgan Pressel and Marina Alex, only to lose seven of the next nine on their way to a stunning 2&1 defeat.

Carlota Ciganda and Bronte Law also suffered a record-equalling 6&5 loss to sisters Jessica and Nelly Korda, but victories for Charley Hull and Azahara Munoz and Georgia Hall and Celine Boutier left the home side narrowly ahead heading into the afternoon fourballs.

United States captain Juli Inkster had said none of her team would play all five matches and kept to her word, even though that meant leaving the rampant Korda sisters on the sidelines.

Three birdies in the first six holes had given Nordqvist and Van Dam a commanding lead and they looked like going further in front when rookie Van Dam hit an excellent approach to the seventh.

However, Nordqvist left her birdie attempt woefully short and after having to wait for the ball to stop oscillating in the gusty wind, Van Dam missed the par putt.

That proved to be the turning point and, buoyed by Van Dam finding the water on the ninth, the American pair made four birdies in a row to move in front against their shellshocked opponents, who also bogeyed the 13th and 15th.

A birdie from the European pair on the par-five 16th kept the contest alive, but Pressel and Alex secured a remarkable win on the next.

By that stage the Korda sisters had already thrashed Ciganda and Law, but Hull and Munoz maintained their unbeaten record with a 4&3 win over Danielle Kang and Megan Khang and Hall and Boutier beat Lizette Salas and Ally McDonald 3&2 for their second foursomes win of the week.

PA

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