|Location||2013: Paris, France|
|Course(s)||2013: Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche|
|Length||2013: 6,983 yd (6,385 m)|
|Prize fund||2013: EUR1,750,000|
The Seve Trophy was a biennial golf tournament between teams of professional male golfers; one team representing Great Britain and Ireland, the other team representing Continental Europe. The tournament was played in years when there is no Ryder Cup. The competition was held eight times from 2000 to 2013.
The Trophy was named after five times major winner Seve Ballesteros, the most successful golfer ever from Continental Europe who was one of the key instigators of the tournament. He made an exceptional contribution to the European Ryder Cup successes of the 1980s and 1990s, and came to be regarded as an exceptionally keen team man in a usually individualistic sport.
A sponsorship deal with the French media conglomerate Vivendi meant that the 2009 was known as The Vivendi Trophy with Seve Ballesteros, the 2011 event was the Vivendi Seve Trophy and the 2013 event was known as the Seve Trophy by Golf+.
The event was played in years when there is no Ryder Cup. Initially this meant even numbered years, but because the 2001 Ryder Cup was postponed by a year due to the terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001, the Seve Trophy was then played in odd numbered years. In 2002 both events were played.
In 2000 and 2002 the event was played in April but from 2003 it was played in the autumn. In 2005, 2007 and 2013 it was held in the same week as Europe's Ryder Cup opponents, Team USA, took on the "International Team" in the Presidents Cup, while in 2009 and 2011 it was scheduled during the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup playoffs.
The Seve Trophy was an "approved special event" on the European Tour. A week in the tour schedule was set aside for it, but the prize money did not count towards the Race to Dubai (previously the Order of Merit).
The Seve Trophy was a team event for professional male golfers; one team representing Great Britain and Ireland, the other team representing Continental Europe.
In 2000 and 2002 the trophy was contested over three days (Friday to Sunday) with 8 foursomes/fourball/greensomes matches on each of the first two days (4 in the morning, 4 in the afternoon) and 10 singles matches on the last day. The format was therefore similar to that of the Ryder Cup except that there were less singles matches, since each team consisted of ten players, whereas in the Ryder Cup there are twelve players on each team. An unusual feature was the inclusion of one set of greensome matches.
In 2003 the trophy was extended to four days (Thursday to Sunday). On the first two days there were 5 fourball matches each day. The third day had 4 greensomes in the morning and 4 foursomes in the afternoon, with 10 singles matches on the fourth day. This format remained the same until 2013 when the greensome matches on the third morning were replaced with foursomes matches.
The winner of each match scores a point for his team, with ½ a point each for any match that is tied after the 18 holes. In 2000 and 2002 there were 26 points available and so 13½ points were required for victory. Since 2003 there have been 28 points available and so 14½ are now required for victory.
A foursomes match is a competition between two teams of two golfers. The golfers on the same team take alternate shots throughout the match, with the same ball. Each hole is won by the team that completes the hole in the fewest shots. A greensomes match is similar to a foursomes match except that both players tee off on every hole. Each pair then chooses one of their balls and alternate strokes are then played with that ball to complete the hole. A fourball match is also a competition between two teams of two golfers, but all four golfers play their own ball throughout the round rather than alternating shots, and each hole is won by the team whose individual golfer has the lowest score. A singles match is a standard match play competition between two golfers.
Two captains were chosen by the European Tour. From 2000 to 2005 the captain was automatically one of the members of his team. From 2007 they were non-playing captains.
Eligibility for the Seve Trophy was similar that of the Europe team in the Ryder Cup. Players had to be Europeans and be a member of the European Tour.
From 2000 to 2005 the captain had one "captain's pick", a player chosen at the discretion of the team captains, while in 2007 this was increased to two. However from 2009 team qualification was based solely on qualification criteria:
|Year||Venue||Winning team||Score||Britain and Ireland captain||Europe captain|
|2013||Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche, France||Continental Europe||15-13||Sam Torrance||José María Olazábal|
|2011||Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche, France||Great Britain and Ireland||15½-12½||Paul McGinley||Jean van de Velde|
|2009||Golf de Saint-Nom-la-Bretèche, France||Great Britain and Ireland||16½-11½||Paul McGinley||Thomas Bjørn|
|2007||The Heritage Golf & Spa Resort, Ireland||Great Britain and Ireland||16½-11½||Nick Faldo||Seve Ballesteros|
|2005||Wynyard Golf Club, England||Great Britain and Ireland||16½-11½||Colin Montgomerie||José María Olazábal|
|2003||Campo de Golf Parador El Saler, Spain||Great Britain and Ireland||15-13||Colin Montgomerie||Seve Ballesteros|
|2002||Druids Glen, Ireland||Great Britain and Ireland||14½-11½||Colin Montgomerie||Seve Ballesteros|
|2000||Sunningdale Golf Club, England||Continental Europe||13½-12½||Colin Montgomerie||Seve Ballesteros|
Of the 8 matches, the Great Britain and Ireland team have won 6 while the Continental Europe team have won 2.