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Recovering Ballesteros targets 2010 Royal Trophy captaincy

Seve Ballesteros is planning to return to golf next year as captain of Europe's Royal Trophy team after starting rehabilitation following brain surgery, the Spaniard's nephew said on Wednesday.

The five-times Major winner underwent several operations to remove a tumour late last year and is making solid progress in his recovery, Ivan Ballesteros said, adding that it was too soon to consider a resumption of his playing career.

"He's very positive, he's walking every day, he's determined to get better," Ballesteros told Reuters.

"It's still too early to tell if he will play again but one of his goals is to be Europe captain at the Royal Trophy next year, and he's serious about it."

Ballesteros drove his uncle to hospital the night he collapsed suddenly at Madrid airport in October and said the weeks that followed were like a "horrible dream".

"We all thought it was a nightmare," he added. "The worst was the third operation, we really didn't know if he would make it. It was like heads or tails."

Ballesteros, 51, was instrumental in the creation of the Royal Trophy matchplay event and led Europe to victory over Asia in the first two editions in 2006 and 2007.

January 8, 2009

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