Severiano Ballesteros in Memoriam (9 April 1957 – 7 May 2011)

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Post by Maverick on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:10 am

News has broken today that the great "Seve" at 1am today suffered respiritory failure, a sad end to the hardest battle he ever fought but as always he fought with everything he had and never gave up and did it with a smile.

Ballesteros was born in Pedreña, Cantabria, Spain. He learned the game while playing on the beaches near his home, at the time while he was supposed to be in school, mainly using a 3-iron given to him by one of his older brothers. His uncle Ramón Sota was Spanish professional champion four times and finished sixth in The Masters in 1965. Severiano's older brother Manuel finished in the top 100 on the European Tour order of merit every year from 1972 to 1983, and later became Severiano's manager. Brothers Vicente and Baldomero, and nephew Raúl are also professional golfers.

Seve turned professional in March 1974 at the age of 16. In 1976, he burst onto the international scene with a second-place finish in The Open Championship at Royal Birkdale Golf Club. Ballesteros led by two shots after the third round, but a final round 74 saw him tie with Jack Nicklaus, six shots behind the winner Johnny Miller. He went on to win the European Tour Order of Merit (money title) that year, a title that he would win six times, including the next two years, which was a record at that time (since surpassed by Colin Montgomerie)Ballesteros won his first Open Championship in 1979 with a closing 70, a round in which he famously hit his tee shot into a car park on the 16th hole yet still made birdie, possibly one of the most famous shots in Golfs history.

He led the Official World Golf Rankings for a total of 61 weeks from 1986 to 1989. He went on to win five major championships: The Masters in 1980 and 1983, and The Open Championship in 1979, 1984 and 1988. His 1980 Masters win was the first by a European player, and at the time he was the youngest winner of the tournament, at 23 (though this record was broken by Tiger Woods in 1997). His 1979 win at The Open Championship similarly made him the youngest winner of the tournament in the 20th century, and the first golfer from continental Europe to win a major since Frenchman Arnaud Massy won The Open in 1907.

He was also a great at match play; he won the World Match and made the Ryder Cup what it is today, I know of not one player than when they think of the RC matches that some form of Seve magic doesn't spring to mind, none more so than the match in 95 against Lehman in the singles, Leham would've have been thinking this guy can't hit a cows backside from 5 paces on the first tee that day, he missed the first fairway by some 80yards and then holed a miraculous shot over a bunker for a birdie, and even though he would go on to lose the match it was his fighting spirit that day that no doubt gave the team belief the if we don't give up this is our day, and he did indeed lift the crowd to new heights that day, I know this as I was fortunate enough to be there that day and even the US Fans were cheering the great spaniard.

I think he sums his career up himself in a flamboyant kind of way in that his favourite golfing memory was literally tattoo'd onto his forearm, he had the image of himself in his famous pose from is Open victory at St Andrews to remind himself of what it meant to him.

He inspired so many and for me there is no doubt the great man is now giving god himself advice on the short game and asking for a quick 18 matchplay through the pearly gates. angel

In words fitting for a man born to a cathlotic country Severiano Ballasteros Requiescat in pace


Last edited by Hobo on Tue 10 May 2011, 1:01 pm; edited 5 times in total (Reason for editing : Grammatical Changes)

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Post by SmithersJones on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:19 am

nice tribute mav. RIP Seve, you were such an inspiration.
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Post by oldshanker on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:25 am

Thank you Mav.

It really hits home when your heroes who are younger than you die.

I cannot comment on Seve as a person because I did not know him, but as an inspiration he was incomparable.

Thank you Seve!
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Post by Davie on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:30 am

Wonderful tribute Mav - thank you

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Post by Adam D on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:34 am

One of my favourite players ever.

I was born in Spain and my parents used to call me Seve as a nickname when I was younger.

I cant believe he was so young - a true character that changed the face of golf forever. You will be missed, Mr B.

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Post by graeme on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:56 am

like so many golfers playing today, he was an incredibly inspirational figure and i feel genuine sadness at his passing. if only i had his short game, i've certainly got his game off the tee!

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Post by ronin47 on Sat 07 May 2011, 10:07 am

This guy got me playing golf,

because he made is look like FUN

cheers Seve

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Post by McLaren on Sat 07 May 2011, 10:15 am

Slightly before my time so sadly I missed the magic of his prime. However, the video's, photo's and stories of his glory days are enough to know he provided a lot more to the fans than most.

It is funny but when EA sports started putting the legends of the game in it everyone always wanted to be Seve, not jack or anyone else. So there is obviously something about him that inspires the feeling of the mythical in even my generation.

I know he was a little erratic in his play but if you look at his set up in his prime it just looks so natural and suited to hitting good shots. For a while now it is his set up I picture when I stand over the ball.

As Phil Mickelson's (the player not the dog) gesture at the masters showed he was clearly an inspiration to many of the players active today. He clearly showed you can go about something as if all that matters is winning and still get people to like you.
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Post by Sway on Sat 07 May 2011, 10:42 am

As someone who's interest in golf only spans a couple of years I don't have any personal memories of Seve, but like Mac says, the stories and videos of him in his prime say everything you need to know. Not just a unique golfer, but a unique character in the world of sport and a man who I am sure will be missed by many - R.I.P.

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Post by McLaren on Sat 07 May 2011, 10:55 am

I have seen this seve quote pop up a few time this morning.

"I look into their eyes, shake their hand, pat their back, and wish them luck, but I am thinking, 'I am going to bury you."


You have to love that attitude.
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Post by Redrage on Sat 07 May 2011, 11:00 am

Sleep easy, Seve! You'll be missed greatly, but never forgotten.

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Post by Gregers on Sat 07 May 2011, 11:13 am

RIP Seve, one of the greatest golfers of all time

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Post by tennisluvver on Sat 07 May 2011, 12:14 pm

Wonderful tribute, Maverick.
Seve was my first favorite golfer - I'll never forget his Open win at St Andrews. He made golfing look like fun.
R.I.P. Seve
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Post by Noshankingtonite on Sat 07 May 2011, 12:56 pm

An excellent post Mav. I started playing golf in the mid-1970s with my dad and a group of his workmates. In the same way that everyone wanted to be like Ian Botham on the cricket field, all the lads I played bounce golf games with during the 1970s and 1980s wanted to be like Seve. He was never the straightest off the tee, some of his fairway shots could be erratic, but he was a magician at the short game and some of his scrambling and recovery shots were incredible - particularly given that the balls and clubs were a thousand miles away from where they are today. Seve really paved the way in the majors for the Europeans to follow. He also made the Ryder Cup a contest, because before he galvanised the team, it was pretty much one way traffic. I can remember one incident which really sums up what Seve was all about. It was at Valderama (memory not great, might have been Spanish Open/Masters) and Seve's ball was obscured by a large tree. The ball was in the roots and Seve was trying to suggest that some rabbit scrapings were impeding his stance. Queue John Paramor, who politely explained to Seve that he could not give him relief. This was coming down the home stretch on a Sunday afternoon (I'm thinking it would have been about 12 years ago, could have been longer). Paramor apologised profusely to Seve and Seve looked Paramor straight in the eye and said (in his eloquent Spanish accent) 'I accept your decision, you have no need to apologise to me for doing your job' (or words to that affect). With that he got a mid-iron out of his bag, strode up to the ball, took one look at the huge tree he was virtually up against and hit the biggest slice (a real banana) across the opposite fairway, over the trees and back into the fairway - phenomenal shot if my memory serves me correct and that just summed up why Seve was so charismatic and well-loved and respected by his fellow competitors.... A true legend in every sense:angel:
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Post by navyblueshorts on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:08 pm

Genuinely choked; even though I've been expecting it since the original discovery of his tumour. Nice tribute Mav.

An inspiration for me as a junior. Played the game with such joie de vivre and yet was such a competitor. He was made for the Ryder Cup.

I'm with John Hopkins of the Times from '08 (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/golf/article4936730.ece) where he says:

John Hopkins, The Times wrote:
And I will go to my grave believing he hit the greatest single golf shot I have ever seen.

That was from a bunker on the 18th hole of his singles against Fuzzy Zoeller in the 1983 Ryder Cup at PGA National golf club in Florida. Ballesteros, who had been three up with five to play, was level with the American. Things were not looking good for the Spaniard. A whistling Zoeller was well down the fairway in two strokes, while Ballesteros had smothered his tee shot into thick rough, about 60 yards in front of the tee, and then, heaving at his ball with those powerful shoulders, moved it 40 yards into a bunker.

From there he selected his three-wood and aiming left to avoid the lip of the bunker, hit the ball so cleanly it flew to the edge of the green perhaps 230 yards away from where he got down in two to halve with a startled Zoeller.

I remember watching the '83 RC with my Dad as a 17-year old. I couldn't believe he could even contemplate hitting that bunker shot and yet he made it look inevitable. Been looking for a video of the shot for ages but can't find one on YouTube etc. If you never saw it, you'd never believe it could have been done.


Here's another link (http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/blog/2009/mar/13/joy-of-six-seve-ballesteros) of arguably six of his best shots; he hit so many it'd be hard to choose. The '83 RC one is here as is the other one I remember being utterly gobsmacked by - #2 on this list vs. Arnold Palmer at Wentworth. There was something about that 8-iron pitch and run as he set up to play it. He had to hole it and somehow you knew he would; never looked anywhere but in the hole.

R.I.P Seve. Truly one-of-a-kind and I'm privileged to have seen you play some of your finest golf.
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Post by Maverick on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:18 pm

Good to see the ET have given all players a black ribbon to wear on their hats/shirts as a nod to Seve's passing and many players particularly spaniard Larrazabal choosing to wear all black in respect to Seve.

ET also confirmed that on the Monday of the PGA at Wentworth they are looking to run a charity day and their hope is to raise at least 300k to donate to Seve's charity and they've supposedly said if they can raise this much they will match the donation.

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Post by DazBoredAtWork on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:48 pm

Just can't believe I'll never see him swing a club again. Even just to see him walk down the 18th at St Andrews one last time.

Im only a youngster (26) but he was my golfing hero and I will sadly miss him.

He's probably up there giving the big G man tips on his swing as we speak.

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Post by Davie on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:49 pm

In honour of Seve the admin team have decided to make this thread a global topic for a day or two as we are already seeing lots of glowing tributes coming in from other sports as well as the golfers.

Thanks once again to Mav for starting it

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Post by David Tails on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:56 pm

Great post Mav.

Absolutely gutted by this news. The man was a true legend.

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Post by HumanWindmill on Sat 07 May 2011, 1:58 pm

I'm a visitor from the boxing forum who knows absolutely nothing about golf but who, nonetheless, always admired Seve as a human being and a sportsman.

I'd just like to add my respect to all those expressed here in response to Maverick's excellent tribute.

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Post by Guest on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:01 pm

I am so very sad at this news, coming from his generation and witnessing his magic on the golf course, it is a great loss to the game and the world is worse off for his untimely death.

God bless your soul Seve, I just hope that they have a decent golf course up there for you to share with the other greats of the game.

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Post by AberdeenSteve on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:09 pm

Not a massive golf fan so don't know very much about this guy but from all the messages on here and on the sports channels it is very obvious how big this guy was.

R.I.P Seve

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Post by SugarRayRussell (PBK) on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:12 pm

What a shame this really is. Only really watch the majors when they are on but loved seeing Seve being interviewed and playing. His passion for the game was unrivalled.

He will be sadly missed. R.I.P Seve Crying or Very sad
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Post by Cari on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:17 pm

Very sad to hear of his passing. I really thought he'd beaten his illness. I'm not a fan of golf at all, but I remember Seve on TV a lot in the 1980s, so to me he was more of a TV sports star, but he seemed like a gentleman. May he rest in peace.

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Post by asdral225 on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:18 pm

Superb tribute Maverick.
There was something about Seve when being interviewed he seemed to draw you in and made you listen to what he had to say.
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Post by Liam_Main on Sat 07 May 2011, 2:22 pm

Not a big Golf fan but he'll be massively missed.

Excellent tribute Maverick.

R.I.P Sev.
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Post by Kay Fabe on Sat 07 May 2011, 3:17 pm

Great post Mav and a very good decision to make it a global thread, Seve was something else

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Post by Guest on Sat 07 May 2011, 3:21 pm

A wonderful sportsperson. I was very impressed with the way he handled the interview in his home in an earlier documentary and the ceremony proceedings, despite still suffering from the effects of his stroke, when he was awarded the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AZRf4jlhsqY

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Post by Schrodinger's Cat on Sat 07 May 2011, 3:39 pm

A great loss to golf and the sporting world in general. He was a wonderful player and character. R.I.P. Seve.

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Post by hogie on Sat 07 May 2011, 4:28 pm

RIP Seve. You will never be forgotten.

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Post by azania on Sat 07 May 2011, 4:59 pm

I gotta admit that golf bores me witless. But there was some magic about Seve that piqued my interest. I always kept an eye out to see if he was winning any of the majors. He was refreshing, a breath of fresh.

I recall on a tv talk show when he was 21 or something, he was doing some trick shots. One particular shot was putting the tee in someone's mouth and placing the ball on it. He hit the ball so damn hard and pure.

Great man, great guy and a huge loss to sports in general and golf in particular.

RIP Seve. You will be missed.

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Post by The Galveston Giant on Sat 07 May 2011, 5:37 pm

Sad to see him go, still got one of his blade loft wedges in my bag. RIP.
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Post by Guest on Sat 07 May 2011, 7:05 pm

RIP Seve.

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Post by Stealth Maestro Agro Love on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:02 pm

RIP Seve. Didn't ever see him play but always seemed a decent bloke, and he's clearly a highly respected guy.

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Post by Solerina on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:21 pm

So very sad

RIP Seve

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Post by Thomond on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:27 pm

While I'm too young to have seen Seve play in full competition,the highlights I've seen and various other things I've seen of him make me think he is one of the most iconic golfers around here.He is known for his personality as much as his ability.

RIP Seve.

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Post by yummymummy on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:30 pm

RIP Seve

Admired and now missed

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Post by GG on Sat 07 May 2011, 9:57 pm

RIP Seve. A true legend

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Post by Wooffie on Sat 07 May 2011, 10:34 pm

Lovely write up, Maverick.

Golf is no way up there on my favorite sports, however ... once in a while there is someone that transcends all that. Someone who has a smile and a fighting spirit and a passion that is just the essence of sport. And whilst you may not follow the game, you will follow him. And that is what Seve is about for me. May your smile light up heaven, Seve. God bless, and thank you.
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Post by pedro on Sat 07 May 2011, 11:29 pm

Golf's lighthouse.

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Post by drive4show on Sun 08 May 2011, 12:13 am

I played Turnberry many years ago, got to the 18th and tugged my tee shot into the fluffy rough up the left hand side. I had about 200 yards left and the group in front were still on the green when I got to my ball. I hit a 5 iron, expecting to just chase it up leaving myself a short pitch onto the green but I caught it absolutely flush and it chased all the way up onto the middle of the green.

The group ahead looked back and I waved to apologise. I strode up that fairway thinking I was Seve leading the Open and the crowds would be going nuts.

That's what he meant to me as a golfer, I have a lump in my throat and a tear in my eye as I type this. Crying or Very sad

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Post by Maverick on Sun 08 May 2011, 7:27 am

Maybe its a strange twist of fate or a weekend the gods knew that this was a special one in Seve's heart for his parting from this life to the next coincides with the Wells Fargo event being played in North Carolina a special place as Seve's first win on US soil came in North Carolina at this very time of year. Then to add to this, Seve's first ever professional event was the Open De Espana taking place this week and to finish of the twists Seve's last ever win as a tour player was this very weekend in 1995 at the Open De Espana.

Some very strong coincidence's there but it shows this weekend had meaning in Seve's heart and it was this weekend he departed us and some fantastic tributes to the great man from his peers the ETs minute silence where the images of Olazabal and MaJ hugging each other in tears showed what the man meant to them, Montys kind words to Di Doherty about Seve, and to see Sir Nick Faldo break down and choke back the tears when being interviewed about Seve the golfer and Seve the man was a heart felt moment and the mere mention of the hug at muirfield village the pair shared set him off again.

Seve was an icon a legend a man that transcended golf and he showed that despite having the desire to win at all costs could still be loveable, charismatic and charming shows why we all wanted to be Seve and look to his inspiration when in trouble and need that miracle shot and think "what would Seve do"


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Severiano Ballesteros in Memoriam (9 April 1957 – 7 May 2011) Empty Re: Severiano Ballesteros in Memoriam (9 April 1957 – 7 May 2011)

Post by tilton_zulu on Sun 08 May 2011, 11:09 am

RIP Seve

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Post by Perfect Jack on Sun 08 May 2011, 11:40 am

RIP Seve angel

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Post by Grizzly on Sun 08 May 2011, 1:28 pm

Very sad - golf has lost a true character
RIP Seve

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Post by Doc on Sun 08 May 2011, 2:41 pm

Gutted and thought he was on the mend after a long fight against the big C. Can't believe he's a year younger than me.

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Post by Scott is Back on Mon 09 May 2011, 9:49 am

Looks like God is going to get a lesson in Short Game....RIP Seve!

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Mon 09 May 2011, 10:35 am

Thought the man showed his true colors against Lehman in the ryder cup in New york...

Hit 4 greens in regulation and was still only 1 down through 12.....

The guy just didn't know when to quit.......great great human being and I'm very sad for his family...

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Post by Guest on Mon 09 May 2011, 10:45 am

RIP Seve!

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Severiano Ballesteros in Memoriam (9 April 1957 – 7 May 2011) Empty Re: Severiano Ballesteros in Memoriam (9 April 1957 – 7 May 2011)

Post by Soldier_Of_Fortune on Mon 09 May 2011, 11:18 am

Good tribute

RIP Seve

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