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Seve Ballesteros scraps Open visit on medical advice

24 June 10 10:24 GMT

Seve Ballesteros has pulled out of a visit to St Andrews for next month's 150th Open on medical advice.

The 53-year-old former Ryder Cup captain has had health problems since suffering a brain tumour in 2008.

"I am aware that there might be people who have been preparing their trip to encourage and cheer me up," he said.

"I do not want to disappoint anyone at the last minute and after listening to the doctors I have taken the difficult decision not to travel to St Andrews."

Ballesteros, who won the second of his three Open titles on the Old Course in 1984, was one of 32 former champions invited to play a four-hole challenge the day before the tournament starts.

Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Nick Faldo are amongst those who will be taking part.

Meanwhile, Ballesteros's fellow Spaniard Jose Maria Olazabal looks set to return to action after a long-running battle with rheumatoid pain.

The two-time Masters champion is preparing to make his first tournament appearance since last October after entering next week's French Open in Paris.

"He still can't practise as much as he would like to, but he feels he is progressing," said manager Sergio Gomez.

"He is much better than two or three months ago and, as he said to me, he is enjoying golf again."

The 44-year-old, who was left fearing he might end up in wheelchair when he was forced out of action for 18 months in the mid-1990s, has had his playing schedule severely restricted in recent years.

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