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20 teams confirmed for Women's World Cup

The Robe di Kappa Ladies European Tour (LET) and the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) announced today the competitors making up all 20 teams for the inaugural Women's World Cup of Golf to be held at The Links, Fancourt Hotel and Country Club Estate in George, South Africa, from Feb. 11-13, 2005.

The $1million event, which will become the first-ever truly worldwide team competition co-sanctioned by both Tours, will include seven major champions including 2004 Weetabix Women's British Open winner Karen Stupples from England and former World number ones Karrie Webb from Australia and Laura Davies from England, winner of 66 titles around the globe.

Also in the side are a host of Solheim Cup stars such as Swedes Sophie Gustafson and Carin Koch, Meg Mallon and Beth Daniel from the USA, Elisabeth Esterl from Germany, Patricia Meunier-Lebouc from France, Scots Catriona Matthew and Janice Moodie and Spaniards Paula Marti and Ana B. Sanchez.

With so many young players making their mark in women's golf, the event will also welcome some of the rising stars in the sport such as Finland's 19-year-old phenomenon Minea Blomqvist and 14-year-old amateur Ashleigh Simon who will partner Laurette Maritz for the home nation, South Africa.

Blomqvist, the Ryder Cup Wales Rookie of the Year on the LET, has already made an indelible mark on the game by becoming the third youngest player to have won on the LET and also has carded 62 on two occasions including a record setting mark of ten under par in a major championship, the lowest ever score in any major championship, male or female.

Simon, still a student in South Africa, burst onto the scene when she won the Acer Women's SA Open on the Nedbank Women's Golf Tour earlier this year.

" Women's golf around the globe is currently undergoing a changing of the guard as many young players are adding tournament titles to their fledgling résumés, even as teenagers," said Karen Lunn, Chairman of the Robe di Kappa Ladies European Tour.

"T he more established names in women's golf are still winning titles with aplomb and what we will witness in this inaugural event is a tremendous marriage of youth and experience and will highlight the diversity of talent currently on show in our sport ."

"We are delighted to extend our relationship with the LPGA to develop the first co-sanctioned Women's World Cup of Golf and this highlights that the growth and appetite for women's profes sional golf is bigger than ever.

"I would like to acknowledge the dedication and hard work input by the organisers Tania Fourie and Lesley Copeman in South Africa for making this groundbreaking event possible and this can only further the development of women's golf in the region.

"This Women's World Cup of Golf is sure to attract worldwide interest and offers the perfect opportunity to showcase the talents of the international memberships which both the LET and the LPGA enjoy.

"Fancourt Hotel and Golf Resort is a world class location for an event of this stature having hosted The President's Cup last season and as you would expect, offers the world's best players a fantastic setting and an exceptional challenge."

LPGA Commissioner Ty M. Votaw added:

"We very much look forward to the Women's World Cup of Golf in South Africa in February.

"Not only will this mark the first time for the LPGA to compete in South Africa and for the LPGA and LET to co-sanction a global team competition, but it also is a wonderful extension of the initiatives started at the World Congress of Women's Golf earlier this year. 

"With the qualifying criteria, 20 countries and leading golf associations from around the world will now have the opportunity to participate in an international team event featuring the best in women's professional golf.  This demonstrates the ongoing success and growth of women's golf on the world stage."

The Women's World Cup of Golf will consist of a three-day, 54-hole competition with a different format on each day: 18 holes of foursomes; 18 holes of four-ball; and 18 holes of stroke-play. The winners will be determined by combining each team's scores from all three days.

The teams are as follows:

Country Player name Partner selected

1.      Australia Karrie Webb                     Rachel Hetherington

2.      Austria                         Natascha Fink           Tina Schneeberger

3.      Canada                  Lorie Kane                      Dawn Coe-Jones

4.      England                 Laura Davies                    Karen Stupples

5.      Finland                 Minea Blomqvist         Riikka Hakkarainen

6.      France                  Stephanie Arricau               Patricia Meunier-Lebouc

7.      Germany         Martina Eberl                   Elisabeth Esterl

8.      Italy                   Diana Luna                      Giulia Sergas

9.      Japan                   Ai Miyazato                     Rui Kitada

10.     Korea                   Jeong Jang                      Bo Bae Song

11.     Mexico                  Lorena Ochoa            Alejandra Martin Del Campo (a)

12.     New Zealand             Gina Scott                      Lynnette Brooky

13.     Philippines             Jennifer Rosales                Dorothy Delasin

14.     Scotland                Catriona Matthew                Janice Moodie

15.     South Africa            Laurette Maritz         Ashleigh Simon (a)

16.     Spain                   Ana Belen Sanchez               Paula Marti

17.     Sweden                  Carin Koch                      Sophie Gustafson

18.     Taiwan                  Candie Kung                     Ya-Ni (Ruby) Tseng (a)

19.     USA                     Meg Mallon                      Beth Daniel

20.     Wales                   Becky Brewerton         Becky Morgan


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