Charley Hull, who else, detonating birdies and the team captains scenting the early-morning air with cordite, yes it was another explosive day at the Solheim Cup.
The teams must return this morning to determine the balance of power with three fourball matches still on the course after 12 hours of golf. Europe holds an 8-5 advantage but with America up in two and one behind in the third, taking parity into the deciding singles is not beyond them.
There is nothing like argy-bargy at dawn to get the party started. Though neither team would confirm the nature of the dispute between their captains, it is understood American skipper Juli Inkster was unhappy at the promptings of Europe’s vice-captain Annika Sorenstam because captains alone are allowed to advise players.
At the conclusion of the outstanding fourballs, Inkster, Sorenstam and Europe’s captain, Carin Koch, argued for a full five minutes. Inkster fooled no one with her explanation. “I invited them around to my house for Thanksgiving but they couldn’t come,” she said. “We move on.”
Not that Hull, the only player to contest every session, needs any revving up. From a seemingly hopeless position of four down, with seven to play, in the morning foursomes, she sparked labouring partner Suzann Pettersen into action, almost acing the 15th and sinking a 25-footer to draw level at the 17th. Pettersen weighed in with a brilliant escape at the 16th and the winning putt at the last.
“Charley, gosh,” Pettersen said. “You’ve just got to tell her to hit it right at the pin. She’s awesome. I told her, ‘let’s stay aggressive’.
“It is fantastic to play with her. This was a robbery.”
The morning was emphatically Europe’s, halving the two fourball matches held over from the previous night before taking three points from the foursomes to establish an 8-4 advantage.
Mel Reid, up at 5am on her 28th birthday, began with a birdie to secure a half at the last in her unfinished fourball match before going on to add a point in the foursomes with partner Carlota Ciganda at the expense of Michele Wie and Alison Lee.
After returning two-and-half points from her three matches, Reid volunteered for an afternoon session, but Koch resisted, recognising the emotional carousel she was riding. Reid has been accompanied this week by her father, Brian, brother and sister, all three returning to Germany for the first time since the death three years ago of Reid’s mother, Joy, in a car accident while attending a tournament in Munich.