Solheim Cup Review
Now that the dust has settled and the results are added to the history books, sports fans can look back fondly on one of the most exciting Solheim Cup renewals in recent times. It was a pleasure to keep track from start to finish and casual followers seemed to get as much from the week as avid golf fans.
The 2019 Solheim Cup was played to a conclusion between 13 and 15 September at the home of golf, Gleneagles Hotel in Perthshire, Scotland. The Scots are recognised globally as the inventors of modern golf and it’s always a treat to see the game return. Scotland boasts some of the best courses on the planet and Gleneagles is considered to be the best of them. It’s loved by the top professionals and seems to bring out the best of them.
Sports Bettors Spoiled for Choice
The renewal of the Solheim Cup was shown live on TV to UK followers and shown across Europe on major television channels, sports betting apps and live streams. The tournament continues to grow in popularity and as it does the betting enhances. Going into day one, bettors found themselves spoiled for choice when it came to betting markets. There was Solheim Cup winner, margin of victory, match betting and plenty more besides. There was also a number of specials, including a hole in one to be scored.
Much to the delight of backers, any of these markets remained live throughout the course of the three days of action thanks to in-play betting. That meant a bet was always possible and as interesting going into the final few holes as it was before tee-off time on day one. That meant you could get in early to secure a better price about your selection or bide your time and get a stronger understanding of how the play was going.
This summer’s outing was the 19th edition of the biennial team competition played out between the top-ranking female golfers of Europe and USA. Similar to the Ryder Cup, it isn’t quite as big as the male version at present, but organisers are delighted to see it is growing in popularity all the time. Viewing figures are closing, as is the gap in prize money available in both tournaments.
Juli Inkster returned as captain of Team USA for the third time and she was opposed by Team Europe captain Catriona Matthew of North Berwick in Scotland. This was her first opportunity to captain Europe, and she had high hopes of making a winning debut. Optimism amongst the hosts may have been high but it wasn’t shared by many close to the women’s game.
The majority of experts and former players pinned their reputation on a win for USA and bookmakers priced the away win as hot favourite. It was a competitive market, but USA just edged it and were expected to come out on top in such a tight market. The majority of money came for the jolly to do as expected but there was bits and pieces of attention in the upset, especially amongst value hunters looking to land a nice price pay-out.
Backing Team Europe in what was expected to be a competitive match did look a shrewd play as they were the bigger price in a 50/50 and if they made the kind of strong start at home that was expected of them, supporters would be able to possible to cash out and secure an early profit as the prices move closer together. Modern betting means you don’t necessarily have to back the better team to secure a profit on your investment.
Team Europe Stage a Late Smash and Grab
Those who did back Team Europe at the 2019 Solheim Cup and let their bet ride to a conclusion were celebrating a famous win as the underdogs rallied to deliver a late smash and grab on the title. The scores were locked at 8-8 going into the final day of play and the USA remained betting favourites. They couldn’t deliver, however, and it was Europe who gatecrashed their party.
The final scores at the end of play on 15 September read Europe 14 ½ against the 13 ½ of USA. That score meant Team Europe won the Solheim Cup for the first time since 2013 and that sparked scenes of joy amongst the players and crowd that had braved the Scottish weather to turn out in support of their ladies. A gutsy performance in a match that could have went either way, right up until the final ball, but there could be no arguments about the final result. Europe may have secured a surprise win, but they did collect a deserved win and their celebrations couldn’t be begrudged.
Another razor tight finish and that fell into line with recent renewals of the Ryder Cup. The Solheim Cup has a reputation for being one of the most dramatic golf competitions on the calendar and followers can usually depend on a dramatic finish. In fact, the last six Solheim Cup finishes have been much closer in terms of the scores than the last six of the Ryder Cup. That’s backed up by the stats and a look back through the results show that six of the last 11 renewals of the Solheim Cup have been decided by a margin of just three points or less.
Update on the Stats
The Ryder Cup draws in a bigger audience, of course, but the numbers in the men’s tournament just can’t compete on that front. Let’s look at the updated Solheim Cup stats…
2019 – Europe win 14 ½ – 13 ½
2017 – USA win 16 ½ – 11 ½
2015 – USA win 14 ½ – 13 ½
2013 – Europe win 18 – 10
2011 – Europe win 15 – 13
2009 – USA win 16 – 12
2007 – USA win 16 – 12
2005 – USA win 15 ½ – 12 ½
2003 – Europe win 17 ½ – 10 ½
2002 – USA win 15 ½ – 12 ½
2000 – Europe win 14 ½ – 11 ½