The friendship between Catriona Matthew and Kathryn Imrie goes so far back, it is just about recorded in the Domesday Book.

D-Day, meanwhile, is looming for this Scottish double act as they look to plot a European victory on home soil in next weekend’s Solheim Cup at Gleneagles.

It is 23 years since Imrie made her one and only appearance in the transatlantic tussle with the USA but her relationship with Matthew goes back further.

Even as young amateurs on the domestic scene, Imrie was well aware that Matthew had that special something. Not everybody was convinced, mind you.

“I remember being at Catriona’s wedding and dancing with her dad,” recalled Dundonian Imrie, pictured. “I said, ‘Catriona is thinking about turning pro’, and he said, ‘I don’t think she’ll make it’.”

Faithers eh? Despite this parental pessimism, Matthew went on to become one of Scottish golf’s finest standard bearers. When it was announced four years ago that Gleneagles would be staging the 2019 Solheim Cup, there was only ever one candidate for the European captaincy.

HeraldScotland:

“Catriona is a natural leader,” said Imrie,who is one of her vice-captains. “She is very unassuming and quietly confident about what she does. She is super smart and makes the right decisions in a calm way. She is just going to demand respect.

She reminds me a lot of Lotta Neumann [the decorated Swede and 2013 captain]. The players loved playing for her and I think it’s going to be the same with Catriona.”

Rather like the Ryder Cup, the elongated build up to a Solheim Cup features much media-driven hand-wringing, chin-stroking, pondering and predicting about captains doing this, that and the other in a prolonged phoney war which should be accompanied by a wireless broadcast from Churchill.

Much was made about Matthew’s decision to hand a wild card to the experienced and feisty Suzann Pettersen. The Norwegian had barely played any competitive golf in two years having taken time off to have a baby but Matthew had no qualms about throwing the two-time major winner back on to the frontline. Imrie too is not worried.

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“Catriona is 100 per cent confident with the team she’s picked and I think it’s the right one,” said Imrie. “There was obviously a bit of an issue over the last pick [Pettersen] and the meeting went on a bit longer than we had anticipated. But we are making big decisions and it’s not something we took lightly.

“It was a bit of a strange situation. Suzann is extremely happy in her life now and all of a sudden she wanted to get back into the golf. She’s too young and too good to walk off into the sunset and be a mum, in my opinion anyway.

“She’s got the bit between her teeth again. It’s a bit like the Adam Scott situation when Greg Norman picked him for the Presidents Cup and that sort of turned his career around and I can see that happening with Suzann.

“There was a sense of relief when the process was over, more so for Beanie [Matthew]. We are all behind her and she’s done a great job so far and it’s only going to get better.”

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Imrie, a winner on the LPGA Tour back in 1995, has enjoyed the various bits and bobs that are part and parcel of being a vice-captain.

“I had been away from it for a bit and I was 50/50 whether Beanie was going to pick me as a vice-captain,” she said. “But I got back into it right away.

“Beanie and I have always been close but we have got a lot closer over the last couple of years.”

The last two Solheim Cups to be played in Scotland, in 1992 and 2000, led to European victories. History is on their side.

As for Imrie’s own memories of playing in the event? Well, she’s hoping history doesn’t repeat itself.

“We were two points up going into the last day in Wales and got cuffed because we didn’t get the line up right,” Imrie said of a 10-2 singles drubbing. “You have to learn from these past experiences.”

Gleneagles 2019, meanwhile, is promising to be quite the experience.