Sebastian Rühl, the 31 year-old German national girls' coach has been announced as Iben Tinning’s Vice Captain at this year's PING Junior Solheim Cup match at St. Leon-Rot near Heidelberg.
He is the first man to be handed a senior captaincy role in the PING Junior Solheim Cup. His experience and knowledge of this year's venue will be invaluable in helping the European Team defeat their American rivals for the first time since 2007.
From an early age Sebastian wanted to teach golf as a profession. He started his apprenticeship straight from school under former German national coach Oliver Heuler and has subsequently built a reputation as one of Europe’s leading coaches.
“It’s a great honour to be asked to be Vice Captain of the European Team at this year’s PING Junior Solheim Cup,” he said. “I was asked just before Christmas and it was the best present I could have had.
“I’ve always wanted to coach at the highest level. It was a dream come true to be asked to coach the German national girls’ squad and this gives me the chance to use my skills on a major international stage.
“I’m really looking forward to work with Iben and the rest of the team,“ he added. “I’m sure there will be some talk about me being the first man to have this sort of role in a women’s team but to me that’s irrelevant. It’s no different to what I do with the German girls’ squad.
“All our focus will be on winning the trophy and I have been around the European game long enough to know we have more than enough good players to achieve that goal.”
Tinning was delighted Rühl accepted the job as Vice Captain and believes they can form a very successful partnership.
“I know Sebastian works hard and is very dedicated,“ she said. “We’ve already had several useful chats. He knows most of the girls who will be challenging for places in the team and he’s based at St. Leon-Rot so his local knowledge will be useful too.
“It’s clear we’re both on the same wavelength,“ added the Captain. “We both want to win and there’s no reason why we can’t do it. Back in my days we tended to be a bit in awe of the Americans and that gave them a bit of an edge. We still respect them. We know they will pick a strong side, but we’ve also got a lot of great players and it’s our job to send them out in the right frame of mind.”
ABOUT THE PING JUNIOR SOLHEIM CUP
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 twelve female golfers 18 years of age and younger. The competition consist of 24 matches – six foursome matches, six fourball matches and twelve single matches.
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.