The Ladies’ Golf Union announced the 2016 Great Britain and Ireland Curtis Cup Team on Thursday, a team highlighted by a pair of 21-year-old, three-time selections in Leona Maguire and Bronte Law. The Great Britain and Ireland Team will face the USA Team in the 39th Curtis Cup Match, June 10-12 at Dun Laoghaire Golf Club in Enniskerry, Ireland.
The USA Curtis Cup Team, which will be captained by Robin Burke, was named in February. The Curtis Cup Match is a biennial international women’s amateur golf competition between eight-player teams from the United States of America and Great Britain and Ireland (GB&I). It consists of six foursomes (alternate-shot) matches, six four-ball matches and eight singles matches over three days of competition.
Maguire, of the Republic of Ireland, is No. 1 in the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking™ (WAGR) and Law, of England, is No. 4. Both accomplished amateurs were on the last GB&I Team to win the Curtis Cup, a 10½-9½ victory in 2012 at The Nairn Golf Club in Scotland. Maguire also played in 2010 at Essex County Club in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass., while Law competed in the 2014 Match at St. Louis (Mo.) Country Club, a 13-7 victory for the USA.
Charlotte Thomas, 23, of England, is the third member of the 2016 GB&I Team with previous Curtis Cup experience, having competed two years ago.
The five newcomers to the GB&I side are Maria Dunne, 32, of Ireland, Alice Hewson, 18, of England, Meghan MacLaren, 21, of England, Olivia Mehaffey, 18, of Northern Ireland, and Rochelle Morris, 20, of England.
The first reserve is Lianna Bailey, 19, of England.
“We have an extremely talented team, which has considerable experience playing amateur golf at the highest level,” said GB&I captain Elaine Farquharson-Black, who competed in the 1990 and 1992 Curtis Cup Matches. “I am looking forward to meeting up with the team at The Castle Golf Club [in early June] to prepare for the Match. With some of the best players in the world on both sides, it is going to be a really exciting Curtis Cup.”
Six of the eight GB&I players were automatic selections – the top four in the WAGR as of April 27 and the leading two players in the LGU’s Order of Merit not selected from the WAGR – with the final two golfers picked by the LGU Selection Panel.
The USA leads the series, 28-7-3.
Maguire, a sophomore at Duke University, was the recipient of the 2015 Mark H. McCormack Medal, given annually to the No. 1 men’s and women’s players in the WAGR. She also won the 2015 Annika Award, given to the outstanding player in women’s college golf, and was named Women’s Golf Coaches Association Freshman of the Year. Along with twin sister Lisa, she competed in the 2010 Curtis Cup. She has represented Europe in the Junior Ryder Cup and Junior Solheim Cup matches against the USA.