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Stage Set for Solheim Showdown in Sweden

2007 Solheim CupPORTLAND, Ore. -- The Solheim Cup will celebrate its 10th staging this week when the U.S. and European Solheim Cup teams meet at Halmstad Golf Club in Halmstad, Sweden.
The U.S. Team, captained by LPGA Tour and World Golf Halls of Fame member Betsy King, is looking to defend its 2005 victory and win for only the second time on European soil, while the Helen Alfredsson-led European squad is aiming for its third-straight Solheim Cup victory in Europe.
The 6,615-yard Halmstad Golf Club is the stage for the battle, which begins Friday with morning Foursomes matches and afternoon Four-ball play. More Foursomes and Four-ball action continues on Saturday, and the quest for the Cup culminates with the 12 singles matches on Sunday.
The U.S. Team is led by six-time Solheim Cup veteran Juli Inkster, as well as four-time past U.S. Team member Pat Hurst. Laura Diaz, Cristie Kerr and Sherri Steinhauer are all three-time members of the American squad as well. Twenty-one-year-old Paula Creamer is making her second Solheim Cup appearance after leading the Americans in her rookie debut with 3 points in 2005.
Speaking of rookies, the U.S. Team will also feature four rookies including, Nicole Castrale, Brittany Lincicome, Stacy Prammanasudh and Morgan Pressel. Natalie Gulbis, a member of the victorious 2005 U.S. Team, and Angela Stanford, who played on the 2003 U.S. Team in Malmo, Sweden, round out King's 12-member squad.
For the Europeans, native Swede Annika Sorenstam leads the way, along with England's Laura Davies, who has played in all nine previous stagings of the event. Sorenstam is the event's all-time points leader with 21 points in her previous seven appearances, while Davies trails closely behind with 20 points.
England's Trish Johnson, who won on the Ladies European Tour (LET) in May, is a seven-time member of the European Team, while Sweden's Sophie Gustafson is making her sixth appearance on the European Team and coming off two top-10 finishes on the LPGA Tour.
Norway's Suzann Pettersen, who has had a breakout season on the LPGA Tour with her first two wins earlier this year, can be counted on once again to be a fierce competitor for the European squad in her fourth appearance this week. Denmark's Iben Tinning, Scotland's Catriona Matthew and Swede Maria Hjorth have also competed in three Solheim Cups for Europe. France's Gwladys Nocera returns for her second-straight appearance on the European Team and will be joined by first-timers Becky Brewerton (Wales), Bettina Hauret (Germany) and Linda Wessberg (Sweden).
The U.S. Team staged an exciting victory over Europe in 2005 on U.S. soil, winning the Cup back from the Europeans 15 -12 .
This year's event will be televised live by The GOLF CHANNEL, which will televise at least 26 hours of live golf, beginning Friday, Sept. 14 at 2 a.m. EST. The GOLF CHANNEL will also show the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and a daily post-game show. In addition, GOLF CHANNEL will re-air in primetime three hours of the most compelling portions from each day's competition.
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 Ladies European Tour (LET). The U.S. Team leads the competition, 6-3, but has only won once in Europe. The European Team has won three of the four events held overseas and will be looking to regain the Cup this week.
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - Solheim Cup