The Seve Trophy is a team cup competition for European golfers who are members of the European Tour. One team is comprised of golfers from Great Britain & Ireland, the other of golfers from Continental Europe. It is played every other year, in the Ryder Cup's off years (currently, the Ryder Cup is played in even-numbered years and the Seve Trophy in odd-numbered years). The match format is similar to, but not the same as, the Ryder Cup (more on the format/schedule below).
The Seve Trophy is named after Seve Ballesteros, who spearheaded its creation. It was first played in 2000.
2013 Seve Trophy
• Final Score: Continental Europe 15, Great Britain & Ireland 13
• Where: Saint-Nom-La-Bretech in Paris, France
• Captains: GB&I - Sam Torrance; Continental Europe - Jose Maria Olazabal
2013 Team Rosters:
- GB&I - Jamie Donaldson, David Lynn, Stephen Gallacher, Chris Wood, Paul Lawrie, Marc Warren, Scott Jamieson, Paul Casey, Tommy Fleedwood, Simon Khan
Continentals - Matteo Manassero, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Thomas Bjorn, Francesco Molinari, Joost Luiten, Mikko Ilonen, Thorbjorn Olesen, Gregory Bourdy, Nicolas Colsaerts
How Seve Trophy Players are Selected:
The player selection process is quite simple: Each team gets 10 players, and all are automatic selections (there are no captain's picks). The selection criteria is the same for both teams. As of the pre-determined cutoff date, the teams are fill thusly:
- Five highest-ranked (available) players from the Official World Golf Ranking;
- And then the five highest (available) players not already qualified from the Race to Dubai (European Tour money list).
Seve Trophy Format:
Like the Ryder Cup, the Seve Trophy consists of multiple days of doubles match play, and a final day of singles match play. The formats of fourball and foursomes are used. Unlike the Ryder Cup, Seve Trophy teams consist of 10 players rather than 12, and the competition takes place over four days rather than three. In 2013, the format/schedule is this:
- Day 1: Five fourball matches
- Day 2: Five fourball matches
- Day 3: Two sessions (morning and afternoon) of four foursomes each
- Day 4: Ten singles matches
Matches are worth one point to the winner, or a half-point to each side if the match is halved. If the overall match ends all square, the team captains select two players each to play off against one another in the greensomes format in order to determine a winner.
Seve Trophy Team Captains:
Team captains at each of the Seve Trophy competitions played to date (GB&I captain listed first, followed by Continental Europe captain):
2013 - Sam Torrance and Jose Maria Olazabal
2011 - Paul McGinley and Jean Van de Velde
2009 - Paul McGinley and Thomas Bjorn
2007 - Nick Faldo and Seve Ballesteros
2005 - Colin Montgomerie and Jose Maria Olazabal
2003 - Colin Montgomerie and Seve Ballesteros
2002 - Colin Montgomerie and Seve Ballesteros
2000 - Colin Montgomerie and Seve Ballesteros
Seve Trophy Results:
Team Great Britain & Ireland leads Continental Europe in the overall standings, 6-2. Here are the scores of each tournament played:
2013 - Continentals 15, GB&I 13
2011 - GB&I 15.5, Continentals 12.5
2009 - GB&I 16.5, Continentals 11.5
2007 - GB&I 16.5, Continentals 11.5
2005 - GB&I 16.5, Continentals 11.5
2003 - GB&I 15, Continentals 13
2002 - GB&I 14.5, Continentals 11.5
2000 - Continentals 13.5, GB&I 12.5
More about the Seve Trophy:
- The Seve Trophy is part of the European Tour schedule, and there is no "opposite field" event played the same week.
- Players in the Seve Trophy are paid, but earnings do not count toward the European Tour's money list. In 2013, the purse was €1,750,000; in 2011, it was €1,150,000.
- The Seve Trophy has experimented with different scoring formats in the past; in 2011 greensomes was part of tournament play. In 2013, greensomes was reserved for a possible playoff. In greensomes, the two players on a side both tee off, the best of the two drives is selected, and they play alternate shot into the hole.
- Golfers who've been named captain for the Ryder Cup have frequently captained in the Seve Trophy first. For example, Colin Montgomerie captained in the Seve Trophy four times before leading the 2010 European Ryder Cup team; Nick Faldo captained in the 2007 Seve Trophy and then the 2008 Ryder Cup; Jose Maria Olazabal captained in the 2005 Seve Trophy and then the 2012 Ryder Cup; and Paul McGinley captained the Seve Trophy twice before being named a 2014 Ryder Cup captain.
- Montgomerie and the event's namesake, Seve Ballesteros, share the record for serving as captain the most times. Each captained four times.