Sheehan, a 22-year veteran with 35 victories, has played on four U.S. Solheim Cup Teams (1990-96). She now has the distinction of being both the U.S. Team captain with the most Solheim Cup experience and the captain with the most points scored in Solheim competition (5 1/2).
Sheehan talks about her selection as U.S. Captain
'I am very excited and thrilled to be named the captain of the U.S. Solheim Cup Team for 2002,' said Sheehan. 'This is something I have looked forward to for a long time. I was chosen for this position by people I respect and admire, and I am grateful to have this opportunity. This is a leadership role that I have never had before, but I think it will be the perfect capstone to the wonderful Hall of Fame career I have had as part of the LPGA.'
The guidelines used by the committee to select the captain include: previous Solheim Cup experience, number of years on the LPGA Tour, more than 40 years of age and LPGA Tour success.
'Patty's Solheim and LPGA Tour experience are enough to make her a competent captain, but her ability to thrive under pressure, her enthusiasm for competition and her love of golf should make her a legendary leader,' said Ty Votaw, LPGA commissioner and member of the selection committee. 'Under her direction, I am confident the 2002 U.S. Team will provide an outstanding show of golf skill, team spirit and determination to regain the Cup.'
Sheehan became the 13th member of the LPGA Tour Hall of Fame on March 23, 1993. She has accumulated 35 tournament title victories, including six majors, has more than $5.5 million in career earnings, and still plays a limited schedule on the LPGA Tour.
The Solheim Cup is a biennial, trans-Atlantic team match-play competition featuring the best U.S.-born players from the LPGA and the best European-born players from the Evian Ladies European Tour. The first Solheim Cup was held in 1990 with the United States holding a 4-2 series advantage.