Solheim Cup: Sorenstam and Inkster both opt for rookies with wildcards
By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 07/08/17 12:34am
Annika Sorenstam picked two Solheim Cup rookies as the European captain finalised her team for next week's contest against the USA in Iowa.
Sorenstam added Anna Nordqvist to her eight qualifiers despite her recent bout of glandular fever, while two-time Solheim Cup player Caroline Masson was the second of her four selections.
But the European captain opted for youth with her remaining picks and named her compatriot Madelene Sagstrom along with young Dane Emily Pedersen for the competition at the Des Moines Golf and Country Club.
Nordqvist, the highest-ranked European player in the world rankings, emerged as a doubt for the event when she was forced to pull out of the Ladies Scottish Open last week due to her illness.
But the 30-year-old, who has been a consistent performer for Europe in each of the last four Solheim Cups, returned to action at the Ricoh Women's British Open and finished in a tie for seventh, making her a "no brainer" for a wilcard pick, according to Sorenstam.
Masson secured her third straight appearance with a tie for third at Kingsbarns, while Pedersen enjoyed a solid season on the Ladies European Tour last year and finished seventh in the Order of Merit. The Dane has also posted four top-20 finished in six starts so far in 2017.
Sagstrom was a surprise choice ahead of the likes of Azahara Munoz, Caroline Hedwall and Sandra Gal, although the 24-year-old has enjoyed a decent year on the LPGA Tour with two top-10 finishes and a tie for 11th at the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.
American counterpart Juli Inkster had only two wildcard picks to add to her 10 automatic qualifiers, and she also went for inexperience as she named Austin Ernst and Angel Yin.
It will be the first time in 10 years that Paula Creamer and Morgan Pressel will not feature in the team, while Inkster also ignored the claims of Angela Stanford, who was the leading non-qualifier on the USA points list.
Georgia Hall (Eng)
Florentyna Parker (Eng)
Mel Reid (Eng)
Carlota Ciganda (Esp)
Suzann Pettersen (Nor)
Charley Hull (Eng)
Karine Icher (Fra)
Jodi Ewart Shadoff (Eng)
Anna Nordqvist (Swe)
Caroline Masson (Ger)
Emily Pedersen (Den)
Madelene Sagstrom (Swe)