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Annika Sorenstam will play in U.S. Women's Open at Pine Needles; first major in 14 years

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When Annika Sorenstam retired from golf in 2008, she said, "I feel I achieved so much more than I ever thought I could." But now, 14 years later, she's back for more. 

After winning the U.S. Senior Women's Open last year, the 72-time LPGA winner will exercise her invitation to compete in this year's U.S. Women's Open. The event will take place June 2-5 at Pine Needles in North Carolina, the site of Sorenstam's second USWO title in 1996.

“I’m excited to have the opportunity to play in a U.S. Women’s Open again, especially with it being held at Pine Needles,” Sorenstam said. “I really never thought I would play in another one, but everything just sort of fell into place. Teeing it up in the greatest championship in women’s golf, at a venue that has so many incredible memories for me, and to be able to do so with my family means a lot to us. I’m sure Peggy Kirk Bell [World Golf Hall of Fame inductee and longtime Pine Needles owner] is looking down and smiling at how this all came together.” 

Not only is the 51-year-old Swede excited for her major return, but so is the USGA, as any fans who purchase two tickets for the championship from now until Feb. 28 will receive a special edition Sorenstam bobblehead. 

The 10-time major champion, who retired from the game to focus on raising a family with her husband, Mike McGee, last made a U.S. Open start in 2008 at Interlachen Country Club. Though Sorenstam finished T-24, she went out with a bang, holing out for eagle from 199 yards on her 72nd hole. 

Now, 14 years later, the Hall of Famer will aim to recapture that same magic while achieving another career milestone by edging Phil Mickelson, who won the PGA last year at age 50, as the oldest-ever player to win a major championship.