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Solheim Cup: Lexi Thompson to hit first tee shot as Linn Grant and Maja Stark lead out Team Europe

Lexi Thompson to hit the opening tee shot of the Solheim Cup, where Team Europe chase a third consecutive victory over Team USA; Celine Boutier partners Georgia Hall and Leona Maguire teams up with Anna Nordqvist in Friday foursomes; Watch live from 6.30am on Sky Sports Golf

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Sky Sports Golf's Jamie Weir and Ali Stafford are surprised by the boldness of Team Europe's decision to send out rookie pair Linn Grant and Maya Stark in the Solheim Cup opening foursomes

Swedish superstars Linn Grant and Maja Stark will begin Team Europe’s bid for a historic Solheim Cup threepeat by leading out the hosts in the opening match of the Friday foursomes.

The rookie duo, who have been team-mates at junior and amateur level and have won multiple tournaments over the past two seasons, will go out at 8.10am local time (7.10am BST) at Finca Cortesin as Europe begin their bid for a third consecutive victory.

The Swedish pair will take on Megan Khang and Solheim Cup veteran Lexi Thompson, who will hit the opening tee shot of the contest and is the only member of the last American team to win on European soil in 2015.

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Sky Sports reporter Jamie Weir catches up with good friends Linn Grant and Maja Stark who are part of Team Europe for this year's Solheim Cup

Suzann Pettersen has stuck with two of their successful pairings from the unbeaten opening foursomes session in 2021, with Celine Boutier teaming up with Georgia Hall and Charley Hull partnering Emily Kristine Pedersen.

Hall and Boutier remain unbeaten together in four matches across the past two Solheim Cups, registering three points together in the 2019 victory at Gleneagles before halving their match on the opening morning two years later.

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Watch the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup exclusively live on Sky Sports. Live coverage of the Solheim Cup is from September 22-24 and the Ryder Cup is live from September 29-October 1

The European pair take on three-time Solheim Cup player Danielle Kang and rookie Andrea Lee, while Hull and Pedersen start against Ally Ewing and debutant Cheyenne Knight.

Leona Maguire, who top-scored with 4.5 points during an unbeaten debut in 2021, will go out alongside playing vice-captain Anna Nordqvist - making her eighth consecutive appearance for Team Europe.

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As the Solheim Cup gets under way on September 22, we take a look back at some classic winning moments from down the years between Team USA and Team Europe

That pairing will face former world No 1 Nelly Korda and reigning US Women's Open champion Allisen Corpuz, with two-time major champion Lilia Vu - the highest-ranked player in the event - among the players left out by Team USA captain Stacy Lewis for the opening session.

Rising star Rose Zhang, Angel Yin and Jennifer Kupcho were the others left out for the foursomes line-up, while home favourite Carlota Ciganda is one of the four sitting out for the European team.

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"At least for me, I don't see anybody playing all five sessions," Lewis said. "So they all needed some rest at some point and just wanted to give her the morning to just kind of regroup and get herself together.

"She somewhat asked for it a little bit, somewhat didn't. It was kind of my idea. I mean, you're going to see her a lot, other than that first session. You don't win two majors and sit on the side line for very long."

Swedish duo Caroline Hedwall and Madelene Sagstrom also won't feature in the opening session, with Scotland's Gemma Dryburgh also having to wait to make her Solheim Cup debut.

Friday foursomes line-up (all times BST)

0710 Maja Stark (Swe) and Linn Grant (Swe) vs Lexi Thompson and Megan Khang

0722 Celine Boutier (Fra) and Georgia Hall (Eng) vs Danielle Kang and Andrea Lee

0734 Leona Maguire (Irl) and Anna Nordqvist (Swe) vs Nelly Korda and Allisen Corpuz

0746 Charley Hull (Eng) and Emily Pedersen (Den) vs Ally Ewing and Cheyenne Knight

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What happens for the rest of the event?

The fourballs action is then set to begin at 1.40pm (12.40pm BST) on both days, although could be pushed back slightly, with 15 minutes between each match and the final game beginning at 2.25pm (1.25pm BST).

All 24 players will then be involved in the Sunday singles, with the opening match starting at 11.10am in Spain (10.10am BST) and the last of the 12 fixtures set to go off at 1.22pm (12.22pm BST).

Who will win the 2023 Solheim Cup? Watch exclusively live this week on Sky Sports! Live coverage from opening day begins on Friday from 6.30am. Stream the Solheim Cup and more with NOW.

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