Golf: Ballesteros stands down

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SEVE BALLESTEROS has resigned as a member of the Ryder Cup Committee as he has publicly backed a potential venue for the 1997 tournament in Spain.

'In retrospect I should not have been invited or accepted the position when I had already declared my support for one of the candidates,' Ballesteros said.

'I do not think there is any member of the committee that loves the Ryder Cup more than I, or knows my country and my people better than I do.

'But I find myself in a very difficult position because I have stated clearly and strongly that in my opinion Novo Sancti Petri is the best venue for the Ryder Cup.'

Ken Schofield, the executive director of the PGA European Tour, said: 'Seve's resignation has been accepted by his colleagues with regret, but with complete understanding. No one has done more for the recent successes of the Ryder Cup than Seve.'

It is possible that the venue for the 1997 tournament will be announced at the committee's next meeting, on 25 May.