Golf: Ballesteros taken with greensomes: Tournoi Perrier de Paris
Saturday 16 April 1994
The format at Golf de Saint-Cloud is fourballs, foursomes, greensomes and, for the final round tomorrow, fourballs again. 'It's a wonderful idea,' Ballesteros said. 'It's just what the (European) Tour needs to break the monotony. An endless stream of strokeplay events is boring. If this was just another tournament we wouldn't be here.'
Yesterday, the most successful Ryder Cup pair in history shot 67 in the foursomes (the one where you hit alternate shots, ie, Seve drives into the trees and then Olly peppers the pin) to stand at a healthy 10 under par at the half-way stage. Today, it is greensomes (the one where both players drive and the foursomes format resumes from the best drive) and Ballesteros is so taken with the whole ball game that he wants it introduced into the Ryder Cup.
At present, the biennial match between Europe and the United States consists of foursomes, fourballs and singles with 28 points at stake. Ballesteros, who is a member of the Ryder Cup committee, wants to add greensomes. 'The more matches we have before the singles would be in our favour,' he said. Europe are traditionally strong at the team game and weak in the singles. In the last six competitions, Europe have never been behind going into the final day.
Coincidentally, it was announced in America that a new competition, the United States versus the Rest of the World, will be inaugurated this year. Called the President's Cup, it will have similar specifications to the Ryder Cup, teams of 12, matches over three days, etc., but the major difference is that there will be five fourballs and foursomes. It will be played in a non-Ryder Cup year and the Rest of the World team will contain players from anywhere but Europe. Thus people like Greg Norman, Nick Price and Ernie Els would be eligible. The first match will be in Washington DC on 16 to 18 September and will clash with the Dunhill British Masters at Woburn.
The first prize here is pounds 70,000 (pounds 35,000 apiece) and there is no doubt that Olazabal, who has won nearly dollars 500,000 (pounds 340,000) in the last two weeks, and Ballesteros are hell-bent on winning it. When they teed off at 8.40am in the company of the French players, Jean Van de Velde and Christian Cevaer, there were 28 spectators present but by the time they reached the turn, several hundred more Parisians had stirred from their beds and they had as much to cheer from Van de Velde and Cevaer as from the Spaniards.
As the new Masters champion, Olazabal, of course, is on cloud nine and between shots, he and Ballesteros kept up a running dialogue. Their only bogey in two days came at the seventh where Ballesteros left a putt four feet short and his partner missed it. Olazabal was furious with himself.
When they sat down in the press tent, tea was served to Ballesteros. 'What about Jose?' Seve asked. 'He's an honorary member of the club.' Ballesteros had to get the dig in some time. At the beginning of the week, the president of Saint- Cloud gave honorary membership to the younger Spaniard but not the elder. Ballesteros was in a mischievous mood. As to the little matter of Olazabal's name tag on his Green Jacket being spelt Olazabel, Ballesteros said: 'You know what the Americans are like. I've been going there for 18 years and they still don't know how to say my name.'
The half-way cut was made at four under par and the field of 60 partnerships was reduced to 30 for the last two rounds. D J Russell and Peter Baker, who led after the first round with a better ball score of 58, are at 14 under par following a 68 in the foursomes and have been caught by another English duo, Russell Claydon and Paul Eales. Ballesteros and Olazabal are lying third, four strokes behind.
Russell and Baker, both Midlanders, have been travelling companions for eight years. 'We know each other's weaknesses,' Russell said. 'You've got to put your heads together. Just look at Seve and Olly.'
TOURNOI PERRIER DE PARIS FOURSOMES Second-round scores (GB or Irl unless stated): 126 R Claydon and P Eales 60 66; P Baker and D J Russell 58 68. 130 S Ballesteros and J-M Olazabal (Sp) 63 67. 131 M Mouland and J Spence 62 69; O Edmond and F Cupillard (Fr) 65 66; M Pinero and J-M Canizares (Sp) 63 68. 132 F Regard and J Remesy (Fr) 65 67. 133 T Levet and M Pendaries (Fr) 62 71; A Sherborne and P Curry 65 68; J Van de Velde and C Cevaer (Fr) 66 67; M Roe and R Lee 64 69. 134 K Waters and R Mann 65 69; J Arruti and T Munoz (Sp) 65 69; P Lawrie and S McAllister 66 68; M Davis and D R Jones 66 68; R Berhorst and A Cejka (Ger) 65 69; S Richardson and P Mitchell 65 69; G J Brand and G Ralph 65 69. 135 I Gervas and D Hospital (Sp) 66 69; R Goosen (SA) and G Evans 66 69; A Forsbrand and V Forsbrand (Swe) 66 69; A Garrido and I Garrido (Sp) 65 70; O Sellberg and N Fasth (Swe) 64 71. 136 D Smyth and P McGinley 68 68; M Wills and R Burns 66 70; M-A Jimenez and J Rivero (Sp) 66 70; J Lomas and M Tunnicliff 65 71; H Selby-Green and J Robson 66 70; J Quiros and D Borrego (Sp) 63 73; M Besanceney and J Guepy (Fr) 67 69.
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
tv Singer could become the most unlikely star of Westeros
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 I've been called an abusive and dangerous parent, when all I did was listen to my transgender child
- 2 Why this father didn’t hide his daughter’s heroin overdose in her obituary
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
- 5 The most powerful passports in the world
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins
Al Pacino admits he was nearly fired from The Godfather and it's still his most 'difficult role'
Warner Music owner Len Blavatnik tops Sunday Times Rich List
London Marathon: Best running songs from Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar to 'Uptown Funk'
Oldest footage of London landmarks released
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove