Solheim Cup 2015: Pettersen 'gutted' for 'gimme' row

Suzann Pettersen 'truly sad' over concession controversy in US victory over Europe.

Charlie Lemay's picture
Mon, 21 Sep 2015
Solheim Cup 2015: Pettersen 'gutted' for 'gimme' row

Suzann Pettersen has apologised for her part in the controversy that marred the United States' 14.5-13.5 victory in the Solheim Cup. 

Europe's Pettersen, 34, and Charley Hull, 19, sparked outrage in the delayed final day's fourballs after American Alison Lee believed an 18-inch putt on the 17th hole had been conceded, leading the 20-year-old to pick up her ball.

Solheim Cup 2015: Best pictures from the controversial clash 

Norway's Pettersen said there was no such concession, and the point was awarded to the Europeans, who won two up on the 18th, helping European to a 10-6 lead going into the singles.

But Pettersen wrote on Instagram on Monday: "I've never felt more gutted and truly sad about what went down. I am so sorry for not thinking about the bigger picture in the heat of the battle and competition."

The US hit back to capture eight-and-a-half points from the available 12 in the singles matches in Germany to clinch their first win since 2009 in the biennial match-play clash.

The United States have now won nine of the 14 matches since the inaugural Solheim Cup in 1990.

But 2015 will be remembered for the controversy - dubbed "Gimmegate" on social media - that marred the final morning.

Solheim Cup classics: memorable matches 

After Lee missed the initial putt, Hull and Pettersen walked towards the next hole, which many point to as a major reason for the young American believing the putt had been conceded.

"I was trying my hardest for my team and put the single match and the point that could be earned ahead of sportsmanship and the game of golf itself. I feel like I let my team down and I am sorry," added Pettersen.

The two-time major winner said she apologised to US captain Juli Inkster in person, and added she hopes the US team can forgive her after learning a "valuable lesson".

Solheim Cup: best pictures

Inkster branded the Europeans "disrespectful" for the morning's incident, saying: "I couldn't believe it. I saw Suzann walk away. You don't do that to your peers. I expected Carin (Koch, Europe captain) to do something afterwards but she didn't.

"After this morning they were all fired up. The girls were awesome. Everybody did their job. I couldn't be more proud of them."

Koch said it was Lee's mistake, adding: "Our team didn't concede the putt. She picked it up. It broke the rules. We considered changing the outcome but we would not have given the putt."

England's Laura Davies, 51, who played in 12 Solheim Cups, said it was not 19-year-old Hull's fault, adding "Suzann has let herself and her team down".

With the win, the US stopped Europe winning the competition for the third time in a row for the first time.