Paul Lawrie upset by absentees from Seve Trophy


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The Independent Online

Paul Lawrie can understand some of Europe's big names missing this week's Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, but admits he is baffled by their absence from next week's Seve Trophy.

The Seve Trophy teams were confirmed on Wednesday, with Great Britain and Ireland's top six qualifiers, as expected, all spurning the chance to play in the biennial event against Europe.

Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Graeme McDowell, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter will not travel to Versailles, as captain Sam Torrance's side (despite its title, no Irishman will be playing) attempt to claim a seventh win in succession against a Europe team captained by Jose Maria Olazabal.

Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, who appointed Torrance and Olazabal to their roles, insisted he was "not too disheartened" by the loss of the top players. But Lawrie, who is the only player from last year's "Miracle at Medinah" on the GB team, expressed his disappointment at the absence of many of the players who wore the late Seve Ballesteros' colours and silhouette on their uniforms in last year's Ryder Cup.

"I'd walk to Paris to play on that team next week," Lawrie said. "I think it's important. You're representing GB & Ireland, you're representing Seve and what he stood for, for Europe. He started it all off for us. I would never turn down playing in that.

"Missing this [Links Championship] tournament is a little bit understandable, because obviously the FedEx just finished the other day. The Seve Trophy I don't quite understand. I'm not slagging [the missing players] off... [but] it's disappointing for everyone, for the European Tour who had done a great job putting it on and for Seve and his family. I mean, my God, most of us are out here playing because of what he did years ago."

Seve Trophy teams

GB & Ireland Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood, David Lynn, Simon Khan, Chris Wood (all Eng), Paul Lawrie, Marc Warren, Stephen Gallacher and Scott Jamieson (all Sco), Jamie Donaldson (Wal).

Europe Thomas Bjorn (Den), Gregory Bourdy (Fr), Nicolas Colsaets (Bel), Peter Hanson (Swe) Mikko Illonen (Fin), M A Jimenez (Sp), Joost Luiten (Ned), Matteo Manassero, Francisco Molinari (both It), Thorbjorn Olesen (Den).