Norway’s Suzann Pettersen has been named captain of the 2023 Solheim Cup European team during the official ceremony of handing over the witness to Finca Cortesín (Andalusia, Costa del Sol), where the next women’s golf match between the European and American teams will take place from September 18 to 24, 2023. At that event, Alexandra Armas, executive director of the Ladies European Tour, and Liz Moore, president of the Ladies European Tour Joint Venture and representative of the LPGA and US Solheim Cup, gave the cup to the main supporters of the Spanish edition of this competition, Vicente Rubio, general director of Finca Cortesín , Manuel Muñoz, Secretary General for Tourism of the Junta de Andalucía, and Francisco Salado, president of the Malaga Provincial Council, in the presence of representatives of all the institutions and entities that support it.
Pettersen, a two-time major winner, is a Solheim Cup icon as she has represented Europe nine times as a player and twice as a vice-captain. In the ranks of the European team he has participated in five triumphs, including the last two victories in Gleneagles, Scotland, and the Inverness Club of Ohio.
At the 2019 Solheim Cup at Gleneagles, after 18 months on maternity leave, she was chosen by Catriona Matthew and the defining moment of the competition came when Pettersen faced a birdie of just over six feet on Sunday’s final hole. With all the pressure, he holed it up to return the trophy to Europe for the first time since 2013. The 14.5-13.5 victory equaled the narrowest margin in Solheim Cup history, and the Norwegian player announced shortly after that she was withdrawing from the competition saying that “it was impossible to improve on.”
In September this year, after the birth of her second child, Pettersen returned to serve as vice captain under Matthew in Europe’s 15-13 victory over the US, the second away from home. Her first experience in that role was at the 2017 Solheim Cup held at the Des Moines Golf and Country Club in Iowa, assisting Annika Sorenstam. Pettersen was scheduled to play at the time, but an injury caused him to swap roles with Matthew before the competition started.
As a player, Pettersen made her Solheim Cup debut at Minnesota’s Interlachen Golf and Country Club in 2002, in her rookie year on the Ladies European Tour. He subsequently played the next seven editions, assisting in the European victories of 2003, 2011 and 2013, before playing a starring role in 2019 by making the winning putt, which he considers the best of his entire career.
The player, who reached number two in the Rolex Ranking – women’s world rankings – has accumulated 21 professional titles on the LET and the LPGA Tour, including the McDonald’s LPGA Championship in 2007 and the Evian Championship in 2013, two big, but Her fondest memories have been forged by playing with passion and pride with her friends from the Solheim Cup.
“I am thrilled to be named captain of the Solheim Cup. It is the greatest honor of my career,” declared Pettersen. “My best golf memories are from the Solheim Cup. You are with your teammates, with your friends, and you have a single goal. You fight for your companions and share unforgettable moments. I have played with many wonderful captains, and have also been at their orders, since I debuted in the competition 19 years ago. Every Solheim Cup has been special in its own way. You make lifelong friendships and make unforgettable memories. Each captain is different and offers unique qualities. I really want to contribute my experience and work hard over the next 22 months to defend the cup in Spanish territory ”, concluded the Norwegian player”.
During the press conference, Alexandra Armas, Executive Director of the Ladies European Tour, stated: “We are delighted that Suzann has accepted the position of captain in the Solheim Cup 2023. She has been the soul of Europe for almost 20 years and, with 21 points achieved in nine participations, his record is more than eloquent. With his passion for the Solheim Cup, his love for golf and his competitiveness, he will inspire the team and fans around the world. “
After the delivery of the baton and after the appointment of the captain, the representatives at the event of the Junta de Andalucía and Turismo Costa del Sol, essential props of the Solheim Cup 2023, highlighted the importance of the competition to carry the image of this community and this region to the whole world, and more so with such a recognizable figure at the helm of the European team.
“Today is a historic day for Andalusia, for the community and for the national golf industry,” said Manuel Muñoz, Secretary General for Tourism of the Junta de Andalucía. “We are one step closer to the Solheim Cup, a milestone that, as we saw in the 1997 Ryder Cup, will mark a before and after for golf in Andalusia and Spain. Sport is pure emotion, and even more so in a format like the Solheim Cup match-play. In Andalusia we give everything to share emotions, experiences and happiness, so we are delighted to welcome Suzann Pettersen as the perfect captain for the Solheim Cup 2023 ”.
For his part, the president of the Malaga Provincial Council and Costa del Sol Tourism, Francisco Salado, declared: “At last we can say that the dream of the Solheim Cup has been fulfilled. Although we could not be in Ohio due to restrictions on the road, today we are here, with our new captain, on the field where the Solheim Cup 2023 will be played. “From Turismo Costa del Sol we are convinced of the importance of continuing to promote women’s golf, which for our destination is especially interesting because the female golfer spends more and enjoys a wider complementary offer.
“The dream of hosting the Solheim Cup on the Costa del Sol is getting closer and closer and we are looking forward to welcoming everyone to celebrate with us in two years’ time ”, Francisco Salado concluded.
“It is an honor and pride to host the 2023 Solheim Cup and this delivery of the competition’s baton, which has also served to meet the next European captain. Finca Cortesín’s vocation has always been to be a benchmark in the luxury resort segment and the Solheim Cup provides us with an ideal platform to continue meeting this objective ”, explained Vicente Rubio, general manager of Finca Cortesín. “The Solheim Cup 2023 is the most important women’s golf event in the world and the culmination of a journey that we began by hosting other top-level competitions. In it we will make clear our commitment to excellence, which will undoubtedly be enjoyed by those who visit us from September 18 to 24, 2023 ”, concluded Vicente Rubio.
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