COUNTY golf star Catriona Matthew hopes to captain Europe in the next Solheim Cup – despite the disappointment of losing to the USA in the competition in Iowa at the weekend.

The North Berwick ace outshone her team-mates as she won three points from a possible four after being added to the European team at the 11th hour as an injury replacement for Suzann Pettersen, who pulled out with a back problem.

Matthew, 47, had initially been named as one of the vice-captains but stepped in to a playing role less than 24 hours before the event – the ladies’ equivalent of the Ryder Cup – teed off at Des Moines in Iowa.

She kicked off her campaign with a win in the foursomes last Friday, partnering Karine Icher to victory over Stacy Lewis and Gerina Piller.

Again alongside Icher, Matthew, playing in her ninth Solheim Cup, secured a 2&1 victory over Michelle Wie and Danielle Kang in Saturday’s foursomes, while the only blemish to her weekend record was a defeat in the fourballs alongside Georgia Hall as they lost to Cristie Kerr and Lexi Thompson. A singles victory over Stacy Lewis kept Europe in the contest but the USA team prevailed to win by five points (16½-11½) and retain the trophy.

After the event, Matthew said she would “love” to captain Europe when the 2019 Solheim Cup is played at Gleneagles.

She said: “I’ve put my name in the hat. I can’t see myself playing so it was nice to come out with a win in my last game.”

The North Berwick resident also said it was too early to look forward to Gleneagles, adding: “Being disappointed with this one, it is a little early to look forward to the next one yet. But, once this one is over and done with, obviously thoughts in six months will turn to Gleneagles.”

She also praised her team-mates for fighting back from a whitewash in the Friday fourballs that cost the European team any chance of victory.

Matthew added: “With being so far down we could have rolled over but we’ve gone out fighting and you see how many games came down to the 18th. We’re obviously very disappointed but we put on a good show in the singles.

“We played well. They just played that little bit better than us.”