Qualification for the 2023 PING Junior Solheim Cup begins today for Team Europe with the start of the Portuguese International Ladies’ Amateur Championship at Montado Hotel & Golf Resort.
La Zagaleta will host the 2023 edition of the PING Junior Solheim Cup which will see twelve of Europe’s brightest young female golfers between the age of 12 and 18 battle against Team USA on the Old Course on 18-19 September, 2023.
Throughout the 2023 season, there are 10 Official European Qualifying events with the first this week in Portugal and concluding with the R&A Girls’ Amateur Championship on 14-20 August with the Team announced after that competition has taken place.
The full list of events and breakdown of the points allocation for each event can be found at https://solheimcup2023.eu/ping-junior-solheim-cup/.
Team Europe will be made up of the leading six players from the PING Junior Solheim Cup ranking who will be automatically selected, while there will also be six Captain’s picks based on performances at leading amateur events and the European Women’s Amateur Ranking.
Before the tournament began Eva-Lotta Strömlid, the LET PING Junior Solheim Cup Project Director, gave a presentation to the players in Portugal and talked through the qualification process, what it means to play in the PING Junior Solheim Cup, as well as hearing what former players said about their experience.
Belgium’s Savannah De Bock was part of the triumphant Team Europe at the 2021 PING Junior Solheim Cup and explains how the competition motivated her.
She said: “Being part of the PING Junior Solheim Cup in 2021 was the best moment of my life. It was great to be able to play in a team and go through the entire experience. It taught me so much about myself and I learned what I was capable of. I made incredible shots that I did not think I could, I also learned a lot from the other girls and our captain Annika.
“The PJSC gave me the opportunity to understand what I want to become, and it was amazing to watch the Solheim Cup and see the motivation, spirit and happiness of the players. When I saw them practicing and competing, I knew that I want to be in their place in the future.
“Playing at the PJSC also taught me things that I used when playing in the 2022 AIG Women’s Open at Muirfield. I made the best preparations, I went for everything, I had fun and I learned so much being around my idols. Now I have a better idea of what it takes to be a professional golfer and I know that is where I want to be.”
Denmark’s Amalie Leth-Nissen competed for Team Europe in 2019 and 2021 and recently turned professional after securing her LET card for the 2023 season.
She said: “The first time I played the PING Junior Solheim Cup, it was probably the best week I have ever had. The set up was so professional and I was made to feel very special. It’s a great opportunity to make friendships going forward, I already know some of the girls on the LET because I played with them in the PJSC.
“You get a bigger perspective about what it is to be a professional golfer. Learning to play for more than yourself is something that is very important and something it teaches you because even though I am playing for myself, I have a team around me with my family and coaches and hopefully sponsors in the future.
“Since I started playing the international events, I always wanted to play in the PING Junior Solheim Cup, and it was the coolest experience I ever had. It’s such a great event and I wouldn’t want to be without those experiences. It was a motivation to keep grinding and become a better golfer. Playing in the Solheim Cup is something I dream about, to be able to see that made it clear that I want to be like that one day.”