Introducing Europe's 2023 Solheim Cup Team
Captain Suzann Pettersen has now confirmed her complete European Solheim Cup team that will face the United States at the spectacular Finca Cortesin in Spain.
Announcing for wildcard picks to complement the eight automatic qualifiers for the showpiece event in September, the Norwegian, twice a major-champion, revealed that Sweden's Madelene Sagstrom, Scotland's Gemma Dryburgh, experienced Swede Caroline Hedwall, and Denmark's Emily Kristine Pedersen will represent a side that is defending after winning each of the last two editions of the Solheim Cup in thrilling fashion.
Four years ago, it was Pettersen herself who holed the decisive final putt (the last moment of her playing career) to win in the most extraordinary fashion at Gleneagles.
Winning on away soil is another challenge, however, but that was the achievement recorded by captain Catriona Matthew as she led Europe to a successful defence in Ohio that again went down to the wire.
Now the leadership has passed to Pettersen, the most formidable of competitors, who has an impressive team of 12 at her disposal, which boasts that ideal mix of experience, freshness, and players bang in form.
Sagstrom, Dryburgh, Hedwall and Pedersen will join Celine Boutier, Maja Stark, Linn Grant, Charley Hull, Carlota Ciganda, Georgia Hall, (playing assistant captain) Anna Nordqvist, and Leona Maguire in the teamroom in Malaga.
The Solheim Cup has been the most enthralling of spectacles in recent years - and this reunion with America has all the makings of another classic.
2023 European Solheim Cup Team
Captain: Suzann Pettersen, Vice Captains: Laura Davies, Caroline Martens, Anna Nordqvist.
The summer arguably belonged to the French star, who claimed her maiden major championship on home soil at the Evian Championship. She then brilliantly followed that up with victory in the Women's Scottish Open at Dundonald Links. The 29-year-old, playing in her third Solheim Cup, also defeated Georgia Hall in a playoff on the LPGA Tour in March.
Making her debut, the 23-year-old Swede has become a consistent winner on the Ladies European Tour and recently posted a top ten finish in the US Women's Open. She also represented her country in this year's International Crown.
Stark's compatriot, Grant's triumph in the Scandinavian Mixed last year generated widespread attention, but she has progressed again this year, winning on the LPGA Tour and creeping further up the rankings. An impressive debutant.
Now a stalwart with a decade of experience behind her, the 27-year-old had her many fans on the edge of their seats as she finished runner-up in both the US Open and Women's Open. This will be her sixth Solheim Cup appearance.
Also part of these matches for a sixth time, the Spaniard (from the north of the country) will relish this environment, following a main season that has included a title on the LET and third place in the Women's PGA Championship at Baltusrol.
Making a fourth Solheim Cup bow, the former Women's Open champion will have been frustrated not to have won this year or contended in the majors, but she has previously formed a successful partnership with Boutier.
Leading on the course and off it as a vice-captain, Nordqvist brings the experience of seven previous Solheim Cups behind her, in addition to her three major titles. The Swede is a big-game player and will surely contribute points on the board.
The star of the 2021 Solheim Cup (when she won all five of her matches!), Maguire is back for a second appearance and will be confident of once again delivering for her team. Stoic and a fierce player, the Irish star is perfect for matchplay.
Now 30 and making her third appearance, the Swede has won her previous two singles matches and the captain will be hoping that rate of success will be maintained at Finca Cortesin.
The Scot, who claimed her first LPGA Tour win last year, has carried on from that breakthrough and shown the consistent levels that merits this Solheim Cup debut.
Having missed out in 2021, the experienced Hedwall is back this year. Many will recall when she achieved a perfect five match wins during Europe's rout over the USA in 2013 in Colorado.
Emily Kristine Pedersen
The 27-year-old was a significant part of Europe's victory last time, defeating Danielle Kang in the singles and partnering Charley Hull over the first two days. We may see that duo again.
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