The bidding to host the 2019 Solheim Cup is down to two sites, one that Hall of Famer Annika Sorenstam says is “close to my heart.”
The bidding has been narrowed to one site in Sweden and another in Scotland, the Ladies European Tour announced Tuesday. The Swedish bid comes with intriguing questions about whether Sorenstam would want to lead a European team there as captain.
Over the next two months, the LET will review and analyze the bids for Bro Hof Slott Golf Club in Sweden, which has hosted the European Tour’s Nordea Masters, and for Gleneagles in Scotland, which was home to the 2014 Ryder Cup.
Sorenstam, the Swedish star who won 72 LPGA titles, 10 of them major championships, wrote a letter of support for Bro Hof Slott Golf Club that was included in the club’s official application to host the Solheim Cup. The childhood home where Sorenstam was raised is practically in the club’s shadow.
Though Sorenstam has played in eight Solheim Cups, she has yet to captain a team. If Sweden wins the bid to host the 2019 Solheim Cup, there’s sure to be support for Sorenstam to captain there.
“I would love to see the Solheim Cup return to Sweden in a few years, especially to a club so close to where I grew up playing,” Sorenstam told GolfChannel.com. “I have enjoyed being a vice-captain the last two cups and look forward to working in that role again this year.”
And what about the possibility of being a captain in front of fans in her homeland if Sweden gets the bid to host in four years?
“I have always said I hope to captain the European team someday, so we’ll just have to see how things play out,” she said.
Bro Hof Slott is located about 30 minutes from Stockholm.
“It is a 36-hole, top-ranked facility that is one of the country’s most popular and prestigious clubs,” Sorenstam wrote in her letter of support. “It has a lot to offer, combining an historic pedigree with many new renovations ... It is also a place that is very close to my heart, as the club is within walking distance of my childhood home. Nearby Bro Balsta Golf Club, where I learned to play, has also hosted international events and would play host to the Ping Junior Solheim Cup. I am positive that Bro Hof and the Swedish Golf Federation, together with the LPGA, LET and all the nearby golf clubs, would use this grand opportunity to showcase the sport and inspire the game’s next generation.”
The LET expects to make site inspections over the next two months of the two clubs bidding to host the 2019 Solheim Cup with a final recommendation made to the LET Board on Oct. 29.
This year’s Solheim Cup will be played at St. Leon-Rot Golf Club near Heidelberg, Germany, Sept. 18-20. The 2017 event is scheduled to be played at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in Iowa.