Big names turn down Seve Trophy
Published 25/09/2013 | 12:56
The teams for next week's Seve Trophy have been confirmed, with Great Britain and Ireland's top six qualifiers, as expected, all turning down 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 Sam Torrance's side 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, said: "I'm not too disheartened they're not coming over. I've seen those six players. I know what they can do.
"I am interested in attending the debrief with Sam and Jose Maria over a glass of French red wine, interested to hear what they have to say as to how the guys moulded in."
Olazabal's side features three players he led to victory in the 'Miracle at Medinah' last year in Belgian Nicolas Colsaerts, Swede Peter Hanson and Italian Francesco Molinari, as well as two of his vice-captains, Denmark's Thomas Bjorn and Spaniard Miguel Angel Jimenez.
They will be joined at St-Nom-La Breteche by Finland's Mikko Ilonen and Italian Matteo Manassero, along with rookies Gregory Bourdy, Joost Luiten and Thorbjorn Olesen.
Olazabal, who was also captain in 2005, said: "I think we have a very strong team this year with a good mix of players with Ryder Cup experience and some exciting, talented younger players such as Matteo, Joost and Thorbjorn.
"It is a tournament and a competition that was very close to Seve's heart and we will have to show some of his fighting spirit to win this year and improve on our recent record."
Torrance's side contains just one Medinah team member in Scotland's Paul Lawrie, although three-time Ryder Cup player Paul Casey is included along with fellow Englishmen Tommy Fleetwood, David Lynn, Simon Khan and Chris Wood.
Lawrie is joined by fellow Scots Marc Warren, Stephen Gallacher and Scott Jamieson, with Welshman Jamie Donaldson completing the 10-man team.
Torrance said: "It promises to be an exciting contest next week. I've a few ideas about pairings already, and hopefully we can retain the trophy and make it seven in a row."