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Seve picks Olazabal as wildcard choice

Severiano Ballesteros announced his Seve Trophy European team wild card as Jose Maria Olazabal on Sunday after the Madrid Open final round.

Colin Montgomerie, on his way back from Asia where he won the Macau Open a week ago, will name his pick for the Britain and Ireland team on Monday, but his wild card is expected to be his former Ryder Cup partner and fellow-Scot Paul Lawrie.

Ballesteros's ten men for El Saler, Valencia in two weeks' time are: Spaniards Ballesteros, Olazabal, Sergio Garcia, Ignacio Garrido and Miguel Angel Jimenez, Dane Thomas Bjorn, Alex Cejka of Germany, Swedes Fredrik Jacobson and Niclas Fasth and Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin.

Darren Clarke of Northern Ireland may step down from Montgomerie's automatic qualifiers if he stays in the American top 30 who play in the US Tour Championship the week of the Seve Trophy.

The Britain and Ireland team, however, currently comprises: Montgomerie, Clarke, Padraig Harrington, Paul Casey, Justin Rose, Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood, Phillip Price and Brian Davis, with one wild card to be announced.

After naming Olazabal, his highly successful Ryder Cup partner, as his choice, Ballesteros suggested that the Seve Trophy might become more international.

Pointing to Madrid Open winner Ricardo Gonzalez of Argentina, Ballesteros said: "It would be nice in the future if players from around the world who have committed to the European Tour could take part, like Ricardo."

Ballesteros is looking, in the third Seve Trophy match, to make it three wins out of three over Montgomerie but he was not optimistic, joking: "The way I'm playing and with Monty just winning, perhaps he should give me a two-stroke start."

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