'A Massive Missed Opportunity' - Lewis Laments Lack Of Solheim Cup And Ryder Cup Crossover

Stacy Lewis says golf has missed a massive opportunity to elevate the sport by not making more of having the Solheim Cup and Ryder Cup in the same year

Stacy Lewis at the Solheim Cup
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Stacy Lewis says it has been a "massive missed opportunity" for the game of golf not to have more crossover between the Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup with the events happening over back-to-back weeks.

The American Solheim Cup captain says they "tried to do a little bit with the guys" but could not find a way for the two events to join together and be marketed as an spectacular double header.

Lewis says sponsorship issues, with both events marketed separately, got in the way,  but feels it has been such a huge opportunity wasted with both matches taking place in Europe in successive weeks.  

Asked if she thought it was a missed opportunity not packaging the two events together in some way, Lewis replied: "1,000 percent yes. 

"I thought this could have been marketed together as two weeks in Europe, two Cups for play," she added in her Wednesday press conference at Finca Cortesin. "I think it was a missed opportunity for the sport of golf.

"I wish that, people could, you know, get the sponsorship things out of their head and let’s figure out how we can work together because this may not ever happen again of the two Cups being in the same year.

"So I thought it was a massive missed opportunity. We tried to do a little bit with the guys and just weren’t really able to move things along the way I would have liked.

"So I don't know, hopefully - I just would like to see it for the good of the game. It's not to further women's golf. Let's further the game of golf in general."

The Solheim Cup itself GettyImages1338763921

(Image credit: Getty Images)

There will not be another chance to join forces in the near future, with the Solheim Cup also being played next year to put it on an even-year rota so it will not clash with the Ryder Cup.

And Lewis is not sure if having the two events in separate years is actually the best thing for the sport.

"I actually think for the good of the game, for the game of golf, I think two weeks like this could be really cool, if we, if we could continue it for the future," she added.

"So I don't know how to answer that one. I actually, I actually really liked them in the same year, if we can get some common ground and do it together."

Europe the favorites

Many are describing this European side as the strongest ever, and Lewis also thinks that with the line-up they have and being at home - Suzann Pettersen's side are favourites.

Europe have also won the last two events and are looking for their first ever hat-trick of Solheim Cup victories.

"I think Europe's the favorite," Lewis insisted. "They have won the last two, we're on their soil, they have a great team that has a ton, a ton of experience in this event. 

"So you look at history, you know, it doesn't bode well for us. But I love our chances. I love these rookies. 

"I think they're going to have a great week and hopefully surprise a lot of people."

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.