Rosters set for top 8 women's golf teams in UL International Crown

The eight teams in next month's UL International Crown at the Merit Club in Libertyville were determined via the world ranks a month ago. On Monday the four players who will compete for each team were unveiled.

Players had until Sunday's conclusion of the KPMG Women's PGA Championship in Seattle to get their rankings high enough to earn spots on their national teams.

There was only minor shuffling after the KPMG event. Amy Yang moved into the fourth spot for Republic of Korea and Porani Chutichai became Thailand's fourth member.

On the team side, Australia passed Chinese Taipei to claim the No. 4 seed for the Crown, which is designed to determine the best women's golfing nation.

Korea seems a shoo-in, with its four players all ranked in the top eight in the world, but that's not how Ariya Jutanugarn, the top player for No. 6 seed Thailand sees it.

Last week at a Seattle news conference she declared that Thailand will claim the Crown and she repeated her prediction at Monday's roster announcement at Top Golf in Wood Dale.

"Why? Because we have a great team," said Jutanugarn, one of four players on hand for the announcement. She was joined by her sister Moriya, who also is on the Thailand team.

England's Melissa Reid and China's Shanshan Feng also were on hand for the team announcements.

Jutanugarn's prediction drew a rousing cheer from 20 representatives of the Thailand Consulate of Chicago who made their presence heard loud and clear throughout the announcement.

Ariya Jutanugarn, the longest hitter on the LPGA Tour, has climbed into the game's elite with a No. 7 world ranking. She won three straight tournaments before finishing third Sunday at Seattle. The two who beat her - world No. 1 Lydia Ko of New Zealand and Canada's Brooke Henderson, who beat Ko in a playoff for the KPMG title - won't be in the Crown because their countries didn't qualify.

Neither did Spain, which won the Crown during the event's first competition two years ago at Caves Valley in Maryland. Sweden, which was among the eight teams at Caves Valley, also didn't qualify this time. Instead, England and China will play in the event for the first time at Merit Club.

"I'd like to thank my teammates for getting us in," said Shanshan Feng, the world's 12th-ranked player. "My ranking hasn't changed, but we have five others, all around 20, who are looking forward to change. We have never played in a team event."

The U.S. team will be the No. 2 seed once the matches begin. The U.S. roster will have one change for the Crown debut in 2014. Gerina Piller is among the four and Paula Creamer is out. Piller joins Lexi Thompson, Stacy Lewis and Cristie Kerr on the U.S. side.

With Ko and Henderson ineligible. the top-ranked player in the Crown will be Korea's Inbee Park, who is No. 3. Thompson is No. 4.

• For more golf news, visit Len can be contacted by email at Follow him on Twitter @ZiehmLen and check out his posts at

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.