Annika Sorenstam and Joanne Morley have been selected as vice-captains for the 2011 European Solheim Cup team, captain Alison Nicholas announced Tuesday.
Sorenstam, the event’s all time leading points scorer with 24, played in eight consecutive Solheim Cup competitions from 1994-2007. The former world No. 1 won 89 tournaments around the globe before stepping away from competition at the end of 2008 to focus on business interests and start a family.
Morley, who was a vice-captain to Nicholas at Rich Harvest Farms in 2009, competed in the 1996 Solheim Cup and is a two-time winner on the Ladies European Tour.
“I am thrilled, humbled and honored that Joanne and Annika have accepted my invitation to be my vice-captains for the 2011 Solheim Cup matches at Killeen Castle in Ireland,” Nicholas said. “I am looking forward to working with them both over the next 15 to 16 months. Their combined Solheim Cup experience will be invaluable. Joanne’s expertise working behind the scenes in two previous Solheim Cups and Annika’s wealth of experience as the most successful female golfer of all time provides a strong, inspirational, passionate and unified team which will guide the European players to success in bringing the Cup back to Europe.
Sorenstam, a winner of 10 majors, holds a number of records in Solheim Cup competition. In addition to earning the most points (24), she has won the most matches with 22 and scored the most points in foursomes with 11.5. She has also competed in 15 of the 19 foursomes matches played, tying for the most foursomes matches played with Laura Davies.
“I was a little quiet on the phone when Alison asked me because I was totally surprised,” Sorenstam said. “She asked me and I said, ‘Could you give me 24 hours?’ I knew my answer would be yes but I wanted to make sure I could live up to her expectations with my schedule and fulfil my role properly. I called her back and said ‘yes.’ Some of the highlights of my career as a professional have been at the Solheim Cup. That helped with my answer, but I would love to be a part of it. Now I can participate and help to bring the trophy back.”