Finland’s Anna Backman climbed onto the PING Junior Solheim Ranking, when she reached the semi-final in last week’s Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship, at Pyle & Kenfig GC, Wales. The performance gave her a chance to qualify for the European PING Junior Solheim Cup team for the match at Des Moines Golf & Country Club, Iowa, on August 15th and 16th.
The 18 year-old finished 12th in the strokeplay qualifier and then won four matches, before she lost against 2009 and 2011 PING Junior Solheim Cup player Leona Maguire from Ireland, in the semi-final. After beating Spain’s Ainhoa Olarra, Leona, 1st on the World Amateur Ranking, went on to win the Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship but, as they are born in 1994 and 1995 respectively, neither are eligible to play in the PING Junior Solheim Cup.
At the end of the qualification process, the top six players on the European Ranking will all earn places in Alison Nicholas’ team, with six additional players receiving a wildcard pick. The ranking is topped by Linn Grant, Amanda Linnér, Frida Kinhult and Beatrice Wallin, all four from Sweden. Currently in fifth place is Letizia Bagnoli from Italy, followed by Emma Spitz of Austria. Full leaderboad below.
The next qualifying event is the ANNIKA Invitational Europe, at Halmstad GK, Sweden (June 20th-22nd), where the European Team Captain, Alison Nicholas, will attend to meet players and coaches and have a workshop with the participants, together with Solheim Cup Captain, Annika Sörenstam.
The qualifying season will come to a close with the European Girls’ Team Championship, at St Laurence GC, Finland (July 11th-15th), and the European Ladies’ Team Championship, back at Montado Golf Resort (July 11th-15th).
To qualify for the European team, participants must be girls aged 12-18 years old (born 1999, or later), whom have not reached their 18th birthdays prior to January 1st 2017. Prospective team members must be amateurs and cannot be members of a competitive collegiate golf programme. In addition, they must also be European citizens.
The 2017 event in Des Moines, Iowa, on August 15th-16th, marks the ninth time the European PING Junior Solheim Cup team will battle against the US Team, which currently lead the series with five wins, two losses and one tie.
|9||Line Toft Hansen||Denmark||55.00|
|15||Sara Kouskova||Czech Republic||39.50|
|T29||Sofie Kibsgaard Nielsen||Denmark||10.00|
|T29||Paula Neira Garcia||Spain||10.00|
|T33||Dana-Helga Puyol Robert||Spain||8.00|
|37||Teresa Diez Moliner||Spain||7.50|
|T39||Elena Arlas Quiros||Spain||3.00|