Seven-time Solheim Cup member “honored” at selection

From LPGA Release:

DAYTONA BEACH, Florida, February 24, 2010 – Rosie Jones, a 13-time winner on the LPGA Tour who played on seven different Solheim Cup teams during her storied career spanning nearly three decades, has been selected captain of the 2011 U.S. Solheim Cup Team. The 2011 Solheim Cup will be played at Killeen Castle in County Meath, Ireland from Sept. 23-25.

“I am honored and absolutely ecstatic to be chosen as the 2011 Solheim Cup captain,” said Jones, a playing member of the first U.S. Solheim Cup team in 1990 who also sank the putt to clinch the 2002 Solheim Cup event (photo). “The Solheim Cup has been a huge part of my career as a player, and now it will be even more exciting as I prepare for what promises to be another great Solheim Cup in Ireland. I couldn’t be more proud to represent the United States and have the opportunity to lead our players across the pond to Killeen Castle to retain the Cup.”

The 2011 Solheim Cup will be the 12th staging of the biennial, trans-Atlantic team match-play competition featuring the best 12 U.S.-born players from the LPGA and the best 12 European-born players representing the Ladies European Tour (LET). The U.S. leads the series 8-3. Jones faces a challenge in Ireland, however, as the European Team has won all of its three Solheim Cup events on European soil. The 2009 European Solheim Cup Captain Alison Nicholas will once again lead her team, which last year featured such prominent players as Helen Alfredsson, Sophie Gustafson, Catriona Matthew, Anna Nordqvist and Suzann Pettersen.

In her days as a member of the U.S. squad, Jones recorded 12 points over seven Solheim Cups, including an overall singles record of 3-3-1. Her most recent appearance came at the 2005 competition played at the Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel, Indiana, where her U.S. team beat the Europeans by three points, tying the closest match in the history of the event.

The most recent Solheim Cup last season drew fans from across the country as they watched a talented Team USA win at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois last August. The U.S. Team kept its undefeated record on home soil alive in front of a record crowd of 120,000. The winning point came in the 11th singles match on the final day when Morgan Pressel defeated Nordqvist to retain the Cup. Record web, attendance and merchandise sales were recorded throughout the week as spectators poured through the gates and fans logged onto to track their favorite players. Providing real-time coverage of the event throughout the week, had nearly 6.9 million page views to the site.

“Rosie Jones is a terrific choice to lead the American team at the 2011 Solheim Cup in Ireland,” said John Solheim, PING Chairman & CEO. “As a seven-time participant in the event, including the very first one in 1990, her Solheim Cup experience provides her tremendous insight into team dynamics and what it takes to get the most out of every player. I expect the tenacity Rosie is known for on the golf course will translate to the team and create a competitive and enjoyable environment for the players and fans.”

In her career on the LPGA Tour, Jones recorded 13 victories and more than $8 million in career earnings. Her best year on Tour came in 1988 where she picked up three victories and finished third on the season-ending LPGA Official Money List. In addition to her 13 wins, highlights of her career include 187 top-10 finishes, five holes-in-ones and a 5-4 playoff record. Last October, Jones shot 7-under-par to win the Kinoshita Pearl Classic on The Legends Tour, the Official Legends Tour of the LPGA. She previously won two Legends Tour events in 2007.

Jones was chosen by a selection committee comprised of the past three U.S. team captains, the LPGA Board Chairman, President of the LPGA Executive Committee, and the LPGA Commissioner.