By Fergus Bisset published
Continental Europe beat Great Britain and Ireland by 15-13 to win the Seve Trophy at Saint-Nom-La-Breteche. It was Europe's first victory in the event since the inaugural competition in 2000.
Jose Maria Olazabal's European side went into the final day singles tied 9-9 with GB&I, and the match went right down to the wire with Italy's Francesco Molinari securing the final point in the final match against Chris Wood of England.
"I feel very emotional, it's been a tough day," said European captain Olazabal. "Everything went down to the last match and the boys played really well today. I'm very happy to have won the Seve Trophy."
After a great fight-back by Sam Torrance's GB&I side, the contest was on a knife-edge at the start of the final day singles: The two teams locked on nine points each. Simon Khan's injured back meant his match was declared a half and Thomas Bjorn sat out for the European team. So, the game was down to the remaining nine matches. Tommy Fleetwood gave GB&I the first point of the day when he beat on-form Joost Luiten by 3&2. It was something of an upset as the Dutchman was looking to make it five points out of five for the week. Jamie Donaldson and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano halved their match before Nicolas Colsaerts squared things up once more with a last hole victory over Paul Casey.
Gregory Bourdy put the Europeans in front with an impressive 4&3 win over Scott Jamieson. In claiming that victory, the Frenchman became the first person ever in the Seve Trophy to secure five points from five.
Scotland's Marc Warren saw off Denmark's Thorbjorn Olesen to even things up once more, but Europe applied the pressure towards the bottom of the order. Miguel Angel Jimenez produced a commanding performance to demolish England's David Lynn by 6&4 then Matteo Manassero scored an important victory over Stephen Gallacher.
Although Paul Lawrie pulled a point back for the visiting side, Chris Wood couldn't overcome Francesco Molinari in the final match.
The Italian won the battle against Wood, and secured the Trophy for Europe, with a birdie on the par-3 16th.
"It feels great for us, for all the times we've lost in the past," he said. "You've got nine teammates here and the captain, and you don't want to let anyone down. I've done it twice now going last in the singles, I don't know if I want to do it again!"
Seve Trophy by Golf+ Saint-Nom-La-Breteche, Paris, France Oct 3-6 Final day singles scoring
Gonzalo Fdz-Castano halved with Jamie Donaldson Nicolas Colsaerts beat Paul Casey by 1 hole Joost Luiten lost to Tommy Fleetwood by 3&2 Thomas Bjorn halved with Simon Khan Gregory Bourdy beat Scott Jamieson by 4&3 Thorbjorn Olesen lost to Marc Warren by 4&3 Matteo Manassero beat Stephen Gallacher by 3&2 Mikko Ilonen lost to Paul Lawrie by 2&1 Miguel Angel Jimenez beat David Lynn by 6&4 Francesco Molinari beat Chris Wood by 3&2
Note: Player name on scoring in bold signifies Titleist ball usage
Where next? Presidents Cup - USA wins 18.5-15.5
Fergus is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and it was concentrated by his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin (also of Golf Monthly)... Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?
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