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  • Writer's pictureRonan Kleu

European Team Championship 2021

Having to change locations last moment due to Covid restrictions, the European Team Championship took place at the PGA Catalunya in Spain rather than in its original location of Sweden. Warm weather and a championship course in an absolutely outstanding condition welcomed the 13 European Nations. The SwissGolf team represented by Robert Foley, Nicola Gerhardsen, Loïc Ettlin, Mauro Gilardi, Cedric Gugler and myself started into the tournament with the goal of a medal with myself teeing off first at 7:40 on the first day of strokeplay. I played with world number three Ludvig Åberg, and both of us having played well, we were through in under 4 hours. On this day my parents also arrived from Switzerland, so that they could watch some of action of this great week of golf. Thank you to them for showing so much support! My 67 led the tournament for a lot of the day and so I was sent out again as the first Swiss player on day two. It ended in a solid round of 71, during which my putter stayed cold. As a team it got tight towards the end, before we unfortunately missed the "Flight A" by only a few shots. This meant that we faced Italy as our first matchplay opponents. Having developed a rivalry with them after beating them the last two years, we were eager to continue the streak. I won my match on the 18th with a birdie from the fairway bunker, however we fell short to the Italians 3-2. Frustrated, we faced Iceland the following day and won 4-1, during which I won my match by a margin of 6&5. In our final match against Portugal, I contributed to a 4.5-0.5 victory, by winning 2&1. We finished the tournament in 11th far from the position we wanted to be in, yet there were still lots of things to be taken away from the week as a team, including the good team spirit and camaraderie. Personally, I was happy with my performance in the strokeplay portion and my unbeaten record in the matchplays and look to build on it for the upcoming tournaments. We concluded that the fine margins in the times we needed the most, were due to worse preparation and tournament planning compared to prior years, in which we won medals.

I look forward to starting the preparation soon already for next year and to representing Switzerland in the European Team Championships and World Championships in 2022. For now, the focus lies on the upcoming German International and the remaining European tournaments before beginning my time at the University of Iowa!

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