Mallon right at home in Canada

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:25 AM ET

Meg Mallon has a connection with Canada.

It's not just that she won our country's national women's open three times, including the last time it was held here in Ottawa, and has three other top-four finishes.

She's also a hockey fan and a happy one given the Detroit Red Wings, the team for which she grew up cheering in Michigan, won the Stanley Cup again in June.

When her golf took her to Florida, she was a season-ticket holder for the Florida Panthers (talk about some exclusive company), but gave the tickets up in disgust after seeing the way Mike Keenan came in and ran the club.

"Keenan came in and got rid of everybody, all our good players and there were a lot of losing seasons," said Mallon. "There are no fans going to the games."

The veteran LPGA star won Canada's national women's championship the last time it was held in Ottawa at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club in 2000 when just about everybody on the course was pulling for Canadian Lorie Kane, who had entered the final round tied for the lead.

But Mallon overcame a three-shot deficit to Kane and Annika Sorenstam with a final-round 69 to win.

That marked the last time the tournament was held under the du Maurier banner as sponsor and the last time the Canadian stop on the LPGA Tour was considered a major tournament.

"I remember hoping that tournament would never leave us," Mallon told Sun Media as she geared up for what is now the CN Canadian Women's Open.

'A BEAUTIFUL JOB'

"But CN has taken it on and done a beautiful job."

Mallon also won the tournament in 2002 and 2004 when it was played under the Bank of Montreal's banner and finished tied for fourth when the du Maurier Classic was last held at the Hunt Club in 1994 and finished fourth on two other occasions, as well, north of the border.

"I remember (the Hunt) being a really good golf course and I really liked downtown Ottawa. It's very historic," said Mallon.

The 21-year veteran of the LPGA Tour hasn't added to her 18 Tour victories (including four majors) since 1994, but her $90,000 in winnings this year have put her over the $9-million mark in career earnings, sixth on the all-time list.

Mallon was named as an assistant captain for next year's Solheim Cup team, along with Kelly Robbins, by captain Beth Daniel.

Mallon is tied with Julie Inkster for the most points earned in the competition between the U.S. and Europe with 16.5 and the eight-time member of the U.S. side owns a 13-9-7 career mark in the biennial competition.


Videos

Photos