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Copa Reina 2015 (María Parra 3) (2)

Spain’s Maria Parra has claimed an early lead in the race to earn a place in the European team at this year’s PING Junior Solheim Cup at GC St. Leon-Rot, Germany. The 17 year-old from Sotogrande tops the European Ranking after claiming 30 points while competing in the Spanish International Ladies’ Amateur Championship at Real Club Pineda de Sevilla.

Parra reached the semi-final of the first counting event for this year’s European Ranking before losing 3 & 1 to the eventual winner Olivia Cowan from Germany.

The Spaniard heads into the second counting event at the French International Lady Juniors Championship with a 20 point advantage over England’s Alice Hewson, Switzerland’s Albane Valenzuela and compatriot Maria Herraez Galves who collected 10 points in Sevilla.

Belgium’s Diane Baillieux (5 points) and Sweden’s Julia Engström (1 point) were the other two eligible players to collect ranking points in Spain.

The Spanish International Ladies’ Amateur Championship was the first of eight counting events on this year’s PING Junior Solheim Cup European Ranking with the first six players on the Ranking at the end of the qualification process all earning an automatic place on the European team for the match at GC St. Leon-Rot on September 14-15.

The team will be completed with six Captain’s picks. The second counting event at the French International Lady Juniors Championship at GC St. Cloud, France (April 2-6) will be followed by the German Girls’ Open at GC St. Leon-Rot, Germany (June 5-7), the Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship at Portstewart GC, Northern Ireland (June 9-13), the European Girls’ Team Championship at Golf Resort Kaskada Brno, Czech Republic (July 7-11), the European Ladies’ Team Championship at Helsingør GC, Denmark (July 7-11) and the ANNIKA Invitational Europe at Bro-Bålsta GK, Sweden (August 4-6) before the qualification process is completed at the Girls’ British Open Championship at West Kilbride GC, Scotland, on August 10-14, 2015.

The PING Junior Solheim Cup 2015 is to be played at Golf Club St. Leon-Rot on September 14-15 immediately ahead of The Solheim Cup, which is staged at the same German golf club on September 18-20. It is the first time the same venue has been used for both matches.

The PING Junior Solheim Cup is a team match play competition between Europe and the United States, each team featuring the best 12 female golfers 18 years of age and younger. The competition consist of 24 matches – six foursome matches, six fourball matches and 12 single matches.

The aim of the competition is to give juniors the opportunity to further their golfing careers by playing matchplay at a high level and also for the competitors to meet, learn and be inspired by the professional players playing in The Solheim Cup.

The 2015 event marks the eighth time the PING Junior Solheim Cup team will be contested with the US Team currently leading the series 4-2-1. The PING Junior Solheim Cup was established by PING CEO and Chairman, John Solheim, back in 2002 and since has developed a deserved reputation for showcasing the talents of the world’s best female junior players with Azahara Munoz, Anna Nordqvist, Carlota Ciganda, Beatriz Recari, Melissa Reid, Charley Hull, Caroline Masson, Caroline Hedwall, Paula Creamer, Vicky Hurst, Brittany Lang, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel, Jessica Korda, and Lexi Thompson all playing in the match before graduating to The Solheim Cup.

For more information about the PING Junior Solheim Cup please visit www.solheimcup.com or contact Eva-Lotta Sternmarker, Ladies European Tour, evalotta@ladieseuropeantour.com