The race to qualify for the 2023 European Junior Ryder Cup team is reaching its climax
The stroke play qualifying rounds of the European Team Championships were the most recent opportunity for players to score points towards selection for Team Europe.
Six junior boys and six junior girls will be chosen for the team that will compete with the USA in Rome from 26 to 28 September ahead of the 2023 Ryder Cup.
Half of the players will automatically earn spots on the team through the season-long qualifying ranking while the remaining half will be selected by captain, Stephen Gallacher (SCO).
Rocio Tejedo (ESP) has maintained her lead in the Girls’ Ranking. Her outstanding start to the year may have cemented her place in the team early, although the Spaniard’s good form continued at the European Girls’ Team Championship. Tejedo finished in a tie for 2nd place in the stroke play rounds at Golf d’Hossegor in France before going all the way to the title with team Spain.
It was her two closest competitors, Swedish pair Meja Örtengren and Nora Sundberg, who came away from the week with the most points however. The former topped the stroke play qualifying at the European Ladies’ Team Championship in Finland against many of the best amateur players in Europe of any age. Impressive scores of 66 (-6) and 65 (-7) earned her maximum points from the event, moving her up into 2nd place in the qualifying ranking.
Less than one point behind Örtegren in third place is Nora Sundberg (SWE), who won the stroke play qualifying at the European Girls’ Team Championship in France, one stroke ahead of Ranking leader.
The top-three have opened a significant points gap to Helen Briem (GER) in fourth and Andrea Revuelta (ESP) in fifth. Although with the European Ladies’ Amateur Championship in Sweden this week, and The R&A Girls’ Amateur still to play in August, many points are still available for those outside the top-three.
In the boys’ ranking, the top of the table remained unchanged after the European Team Championships with none of the top-four players scoring big points. Sean Keeling (IRL), Peer Wernicke (GER) and Connor Graham (SCO) currently still occupy the top-three positions, with Ukraine’s Lev Grinberg close behind in fourth.
England’s Kris Kim was the biggest mover of the week at the top end of the table. The 15-year-old tied for first place in the European Boys’ Team Championship stroke play, breaking the amateur course record at Geneva Golf Club with a 65 (-7) in the second round. He now sits in fifth position and within just two points of an automatic selection for the European team.
Kim tied for first place in the stroke play rounds with Sweden’s Filip Fahlberg-Johnsson who went on to help Sweden to the gold medals in Geneva. The Swede sits in 18th position despite his strong result in Switzerland, as he’s only played in three counting events so far. With a maximum of the best four scores taken per player, a strong result in the final event could see him shoot up the leaderboard and possibly still earn an automatic qualifying spot.
Italy’s Giovanni Binaghi recorded a top-10 finish at the European Boys’ Team Championship, climbing to sixth position in the Ranking. He now looks like Italy’s best chance of having a home player competing in Rome in September.
Just one event remains for the boys’ to earn points, The R&A Boys’ Amateur Championship to be played in just under a month’s time at Ganton and Fulford Golf Clubs in England.