Beth Daniel's captain's picks—49-year-old Juli Inkster (below) and 19-year-old Michelle Wie—will be crucial to the U.S.'s bid to retain the Solheim Cup next week. Inkster has had an uneven season, but she instantly becomes the team leader on a callow squad, with three rookies and an average age of 25.6 (excluding Inkster, who has a daughter Wie's age). Inkster's 14-8-5 record is one of the best in Solheim history, and she radiates the kind of intensity that a team can rally around. The U.S. is considered the favorite because of its depth, but the Europeans boast a handful of dangerous power players. Enter Wie, who leads the LPGA in birdies per round (4.08) and is fourth in driving distance (267.2 yards).
This is an article from the Aug. 17, 2009 issue