Spanish venue for tournament cheers Ballesteros
Wednesday 14 May 2003
El Saler in Valencia will stage the third edition of the Seve Trophy from 7-9 November this year. A 10-man team from continental Europe, captained by Seve Ballesteros, will attempt to regain the trophy lost to Great Britain and Ireland at Druids Glen last April.
"It is a special day for me and for Spanish golf," Ballesteros said yesterday. "After the editions that took place in England and Ireland, my wish was to bring the event to my country."
The long-term future of the event remains in doubt. After being disqualified from the Italian Open this month for refusing to accept a one-stroke penalty for slow play, Ballesteros claimed the event would not survive because of opposition from the European Tour.
"When we decided to hold the second Seve Trophy in Ireland the Tour tried to boycott the event because they don't have a piece of the cake," the five-time major winner alleged. "The Seve Trophy will disappear because Ken Schofield [tour executive director] is against it but after 30 years [on tour] what should I do? I am supposed to take nothing, go home and disappear?"
Eight of the highest-ranked players will play for each team in the Ryder Cup-style contest. The captains, Colin Montgomerie and Ballesteros, will each have one wild card.
Each member of the winning team will collect £108,000 with £50,000 for the losers. The qualifying period ends after the Madrid Open on 26 October with the contest taking place after the traditional season-ending Volvo Masters at Valderrama.
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