• Seve Ballesteros 1957-2011

European supremacy down to Seve - Monty

ESPN staff
May 7, 2011
Colin Montgomerie played under Seve Ballesteros at the Ryder Cup © Getty Images

Seve Ballesteros: A life in pictures

Colin Montgomerie has attributed the recent success of European golf to Seve Ballesteros, who has died aged 54 after losing his battle with cancer.

Montgomerie captained Europe to Ryder Cup glory last year, having also tasted success at the tournament as a player in 1997 under the stewardship of Ballesteros.

That captaincy role now moves on to Jose Maria Olazabal, who Montgomerie says was moved to tears during a minute's silence in Ballesteros' honour at the Open de Espana on Saturday.

"It was very emotional see to see Olazabal in floods of tears, as he was for most of the day," Montgomerie told Sky Sports. "It's very sad - he's lost his older brother, almost. We've all lost him - Seve was a legend in every sense of the word, and an icon in this game. He is the reason European golf is in the enviable position it is in today.

"There's a number of golfers here who picked up a club because of Seve. You ask them who they wanted to be as young guys, they would have said Seve. I have very great memories of him, and I had the honour of playing with and under him on many occasions. When he was Ryder Cup captain, we weren't playing for Europe, we were playing for him."

Flags were at flown half-mast at the Open de Espana, while the players wore black ribbons.

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