“We’re playing as fast as we can.”
That’s Lexi Thompson’s message to critics of the pace of play in the Solheim Cup at Gleneagles.
After the first day was blighted by slow play, the second day didn’t go much quicker, with the afternoon fourballs session particularly glacial.
It took the final match of Lizette Salas, Danielle Kang, Carlota Ciganda and Azahara Munoz three hours and eleven minutes to play the front nine, with the match finally ending on the 17th green at 7pm – almost six hours after it started.
Fierce winds and, later in the round, steady drizzle made for extremely testing conditions but the overriding feeling at the end of a day in which the match finished tied at 8-8 going into the Sunday singles was one of frustration at the speed of play.
Asked about the pace after securing a halve alongside Marina Alex in the second match out, world No.3 Thompson said: “We're aware of it because we were on the clock and warned. But it's tough to hear because it's playing so difficult and I don't think a lot of people realize that we're playing for our country and we're playing in these kind of conditions, so we're playing as fast as we can.
“We don't want to be out there for six hours either. But we have a lot on the line and we want to hit the best shot that we possibly can.”
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Playing partner Alex added: “I don't like slow play at all and I wouldn't consider myself a slow player in general, probably like medium paced. But out there, you know, there's just so many things going on. I mean gusting winds and raining. Every shot matters so much.
“If you're not fully committed to what it is you're doing, you're going to hit a poor golf shot, and you can't really afford that. So, I'm sorry for people who are watching who maybe felt like the pace of play was a little slow. It was really difficult.”