U.S. to use Rolex Rankings for 2013 Solheim Cup team

The United States Solheim Cup team will incorporate the Rolex world rankings into the qualification process for the 2013 squad.

Starting with the 2013 team, the top eight players on the Solheim Cup points list will make the squad, then the next two highest players in the Rolex Rankings, not otherwise qualified, will round out the automatic qualifiers.

The captain will still get two picks to complete her team.

"The decision to utilize the Rolex Rankings just makes sense, as it certainly reflects the way players have performed over a two-year period, with greater emphasis placed on the most recent results," said Rosie Jones, the 2011 U.S. Solheim Cup captain.

This week's Canadian Women's Open is the first event toward qualifying for the 2013 American team.

Had the changes been in effect this year, Christina Kim, who earned the final spot based on her standing on the points table, wouldn't have made the team. Her place on the American side would've gone to Vicky Hurst, who is the second-highest ranked American who didn't qualify for the team.

Qualifying points for the U.S. Team are awarded weekly to the top-20 finishers and ties at LPGA tournaments. Points are doubled at the major championships every year. Points during a Solheim Cup year are worth 1 1/2 times what they are worth during non-Solheim Cup years.

The Ladies European Tour has used the Rolex Rankings in its qualification process. The top-four players from the Solheim Cup points list make the team, followed by the next four golfers, not otherwise qualified, in the Rolex Rankings.

The European captain has four picks.

The U.S. team for the 2011 Solheim Cup was finalized last week. Cristie Kerr, Morgan Pressel, Stacy Lewis, Paula Creamer, Angela Stanford, Michelle Wie, Brittany Lincicome, Brittany Lang, Kim and 51-year-old Juli Inkster, who is also an assistant captain, made the team on points.

Jones tabbed Hurst, then shocked the golf world with her pick of Ryan O'Toole to round out her team.

Laura Davies, Melissa Reid, Suzann Pettersen and Christel Boeljon already clinched the four spots awarded from the Solheim Cup points list for the European side.

On Monday, after the rankings are released, Alison Nicholas' team will be completed. After the four next available are named, she will make her four selections.

The U.S. won the last Solheim Cup and this year's event is scheduled for September 23-25 in Ireland. The 2013 tournament will be at Colorado Golf Club.