By Ladies European Tour
Melissa Reid, Laura Davies, Suzann Pettersen and Christel Boeljon have booked their places at this year’s Solheim Cup, thanks to their positions on the European points’ standings following the Ladies Irish Open, supported by Fáilte Ireland.
No-one can now catch fourth placed Boeljon, with one qualifying event left to play on the Ladies European Tour, at the Aberdeen Ladies Scottish Open presented by EventScotland taking from August 18-20 at Archerfield Links in East Lothian.
With 30 Cup points’ available for a victory, Virginie Lagoutte-Clement, the next best placed player, would not be able to qualify even if she were to successfully defend her Scottish title which means Boeljon will become the first ever Dutch representative on the European team.
However, the next four players, who are due to qualify from the Rolex Women’s World Rankings on Monday 29th August, could still change.
Those spots are currently occupied by world no.16 Maria Hjorth, no. 28 Anna Nordqvist and Catriona Matthew and Sophie Gustafson, ranked 36th and 37th in the world respectively. Matthew and Reid will head the field in Scotland.
Azahara Munoz is the next potential player on the list, ranked 41st in the world and closely followed by Sandra Gal in 42nd position.
Yet with two events to play on the LPGA Tour before the qualifying deadline, there could still be some drama before the 29th August and European captain Alison Nicholas will have time to consider her four wild card picks.
World number three, Suzann Pettersen, set Killeen Castle alight with her six stroke victory at theLadies Irish Open, supported by Fáilte Ireland and she said: “It’s been a great week for all the Europeans so hopefully our captain has got a few answers that she was questioning herself. Hopefully we’ll get a good solid team of 12 good girls together and we’ll be back strong.”
A host of Europe’s top Solheim Cup candidates performed well in what proved to be a very productive week at Killeen Castle for Nicholas. Top ranked Europeans Melissa Reid, Laura Davies, Maria Hjorth, Anna Nordqvist, Sophie Gustafson and Catriona Matthew all had top 15 finishes while a number of potential picks will have impressed Nicholas, none more so than Spain’s Azahara Munoz who finished second with 12 under. Nicholas commented: “With less than 50 days to go to the big event it has been a tremendous week for European golf. The course is shaping up extremely well and the players have gained some more valuable experience with some incredible scores including Suzann’s 63 on Saturday. It’s a big confidence boost for the team ahead of the event.”
Stacy Lewis finished best of the American Solheim contingents on four under while crowd favourite Christina Kim had a disappointing end to her tournament with a final round 77 to finish on two over.
A large attendance of approximately 28,000 spectators enjoyed an excellent weekend’s golf as they patrolled the fairways of the stunning Jack Nicklaus course at Killeen Castle, county Meath, which will host The 2011 Solheim Cup this September 23-25.
For the latest information and to purchase tickets for The 2011 Solheim Cup, visit: www.solheimcup.com.