Florentyna after playing in the Pro Am on Tuesday at Royal Birkdale
Parker explained: “I’m with ISM, and Chubby Chandler obviously has great connections with the best caddies, and he got me Pete Coleman this week. He knows the course very well. Obviously he was Bernard Langer’s caddie for 22 years and got a lot of experience. I hope it will help me this week, and we play well.”
The 15-strong British challenge includes eight English women, five Scottish players and two Welsh competitors.
England’s Laura Davies, who leads the Ladies European Tour’s Henderson Money List after wins this year in New Zealand and Germany, will be targeting her fifth Major triumph, having won the British Open at Birkdale in 1986 before the tournament was a Major. Meanwhile Stupples, who won in 2004 at Sunningdale, will be aiming for a double.
Trish Johnson, who claimed her 19th career title a month ago in Tenerife, is experiencing a renaissance and will be one to watch, along with young hope Melissa Reid, who claimed her first title earlier this year in Turkey. Two other English players aiming for their first career titles are Georgina Simpson and Henrietta Zuel.
Matthew, who was awarded an MBE in the New Year Honours List following her victory at Royal Lytham, leads the Scottish charge ahead of Vikki Laing, Krystle Caithness, Lynn Kenny and Janice Moodie.
Becky Brewerton will be flying the flag for Wales along with amateur Amy Boulden, who qualified on Monday at Hillside Golf Club.
There are 10 former champions in the field including Davies (1986), Helen Alfredsson (1990), Karen Lunn (1993), Karrie Webb (1995, 1997 and 2002), Sherri Steinhauer (1998, 1999, 2006), Sophie Gustafson (2000), Stupples (2004), Jeong Jang (2005), Shin (2008) and Matthew (2009).
It will be the 35th staging of the tournament, which gained major title status in 2001 and the field features 144 players from 26 different countries worldwide. There are 19 of the world’s top-20 players from the Rolex Women’s World Golf rankings competing, including the newly crowned No.1, Jiyai Shin of South Korea, the 2008 champion at Sunningdale who also won the Evian Masters in France last week.
The Royal Birkdale Golf Club is no stranger to major championships and tournaments, having hosted the Women’s British Open on four previous occasions, in 1982, 1986, 2000 and 2005. South Korean Jeong Jang was the last female winner at Birkdale and finished eighth at last week’s Evian Masters, while Sweden’s Sophie Gustafson also won the event at Birkdale, just before it was designated a Major Championship, in 2000.
South African Lee-Anne Pace will strike the first ball of the championship at 6.30am on Thursday, while Chella Choi of Korea tees off last at 3.28pm.
For the first time this year fans will be able to watch the BBC’s extensive coverage of the Ricoh Women’s British Open in HD (high definition) underlining the significance of the Championship in the BBC’s sports portfolio. On Thursday and Friday, the action will be broadcast on BBC Two from 2pm-5.15pm. Saturday’s play will be on BBC One from 2.30pm-5pm, then on BBC Two from 5pm-5.45pm. Sunday’s final round action will be on BBC Two from 3pm-6pm.