In July at the Women’s British Open, Dame Laura Davies was asked whether captaining the European Solheim Cup team would be in her near future. The answer was a resounding ‘no.’ The thought of being the team gopher for ‘bananas and towels,’ as she put it, was not something she had any interest in doing.
But as it turns out, serving as vice captain was not out of the question.
Tuesday, European Solheim Cup Captain Catronia Matthew announced that Davies would be one of her assistants when the team heads to Gleneagles in Scotland in September 2019. Davies is the third vice captain to join Matthew’s squad along with Suzann Pettersen and Kathryn Imrie, who were announced in July. When Matthew extended the offer to Davies at the Ryder Cup in September, she knew right away the question that was coming.
“I said ‘yes’ straight away,” Davies told LPGA.com during a call from the United Kingdom.
Davies says the conversation lasted about two minutes. The 12-time member of Team Europe last competed in the matches in 2011 and was eager to get reconnected with the team. Davies spent the last several editions of the Solheim Cup serving as an on-air contributor for Sky Sports’ TV coverage of the matches, but she wanted to get back inside the team room.
“It’s something I’ve always thought I’d like to do,” Davies said about being a vice captain. “They’re really involved, they’re all part of a big team of people. I’ve really missed that, being involved.”
Davies understands she may still need to get bananas or towels from time to time, but she hopes captain Matthew will instead utilize her unprecedented years of experience to help their team win back the Cup.
“I’m just there to help if anyone needs any help,” said Davies. “If anyone asks any questions or advice, I’ll be there 100 percent.”
Don’t expect this vice captaincy to serve as a grooming opportunity for Davies to captain the team in 2021. When asked again about the idea of serving as captain, she stuck to her original response. For Davies, it’s about much more than bananas and towels. Being a Solheim Cup captain is not in her character.
“There’s a huge responsibility to be a captain,” Davies explained. “The captain is going to be the one cheering everyone on and that’s not my personality.”
Instead, Davies will enjoy the best of both worlds by getting back in the team room, but without the pressure.
“You get all the fun without the responsibility,” Davies said.