Golf's Seve Ballesteros Dead at 54

Golfer succumbs to brain cancer, 'mulligan of my life'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 7, 2011 5:50 AM CDT
Seve Ballesteros Dies: Golf Great Succumbs to Brain Cancer
This April 4, 2007, file photo, shows Seve Ballesteros watching his bunker shot on the seventh hole during practice for the 2007 Masters at the Augusta National Golf Club, in Augusta, Ga.   (David J. Phillip)

Seve Ballesteros, a five-time major champion whose passion and gift for imaginative shot-making invigorated European golf and the Ryder Cup, has died from complications of a cancerous brain tumor. He was 54. A statement on Ballesteros' website early today said the golf great died peacefully at 2:10am local time, surrounded by his family at his home in Pedrena, northern Spain. Ballesteros, a two-time Masters champion and three-time winner of the British Open, was a handsome figure who feared no shot and often played from where no golfer had ever been.

In a long list of spectacular shots, perhaps the most memorable came from a parking lot next to the 16th fairway in the 1979 British Open. Leading by two shots in the final round, he drove his ball into the lot, had a car removed to get his free drop, then fired his second shot to 15 feet and made birdie on his way to his first major. "He was a man who got into trouble. Only for Seve, there was no such thing as trouble," Gary Player once said. "He could manufacture shots like a genius." (More Seve Ballesteros stories.)

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