Manual Golfs Greatest Eighteen: The Eighteen Best Players of All Time

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Then, the floodgates opened. Juli Inkster is a one of a kind professional golfer. Inkster won seven majors, the most recent of which was the US Women's Open. Gene Sarazen lived an amazing life. Sarazen took his invention to the British Open and said he actually slept with the club because he did not want anyone to see it for fear it would be disqualified.


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He won the tournament and six other majors. Sarazen won 39 US professional events and 42 worldwide events. After leaving competition, he was seen on Shell's Wonderful World of Golf and even played one match against the legendary Henry Cotton at St. At the end of that match, Sarazen gives a sand wedge lesson.

Karrie Webb is certainly the most successful woman golfer from Australia. Webb competed with Annika Sorenstam when they were both playing at top form, which makes Webb's accomplishments even more amazing. Arnold Palmer went from the Coast Guard to a US Amateur title in , one of four amateur titles he captured that season.

Palmer is credited for bringing everyman to the sport, much the way Tiger Woods has done. Palmer and television are credited for making the Masters popular. The story goes that when Palmer came, the tournament was a sellout. Before that, they were giving away tickets. While he has retired from professional competition, Palmer's record is still one of the best ever.

We don't know for certain if he and President Obama have played a round of golf yet, but those at Bay Hill say that Palmer still plays nearly every day. Pars from bunkers, pars from behind trees, pars from seemingly impossible locations. Watson has 13 Champions Tour titles and 68 worldwide in all.

He was leading money winner the year before Jack Nicklaus turned pro. Ben Hogan was the kind of golfer who had to concentrate on what he was doing. But since we know professional players keep each other's scores, those stories are probably just that. Hogan won nine majors: some say 10 if the Hale America Victory Open is counted.

He is one of five to have won the career Grand Slam. Zaharias had been an Olympic athlete and turned to golf where she gained international fame. She was one of the founding members of the LPGA in Zaharias was the first woman to play in a men's professional event, the LA Open in She shot to make the two-day cut, but there was a three day cut and she did not make that. Annika Sorenstam is one of the top five women golfers of all time.

Sorenstam retired to get married for the second time and have children. She has not ruled out a Juli Inkster-like comeback at a later date. Interestingly enough, in his first four U. Opens, including his win at North Shore in suburban Chicago, the only amateurs to finish ahead of him were Jones and George Von Elm.

Goodman was low amateur in , when he tied for 14th, and also in , when he was eighth. From to , Inkster won three consecutive U. She became the first woman since to win three consecutive U. She was a member of the winning U. Curtis Cup team in and was also a member of the World Cup team in and Sweeny, winner of the British Amateur, was born in California, raised in New York, and followed his older brother Charles to Oxford.

With his combination of golfing genius, easy charm and movie-star looks he became a fixture in British society. He was a cool socialite with a mother-of-pearl swing, shuttling between homes in London, Long Island and Palm Beach, squiring the most beautiful women, and playing the most beautiful golf. Sweeny had an epic match in the U.

Amateur final against Arnold Palmer which eventually ended on the 36th hole where Sweeny lost his tee ball in the tall grass off the fairway at Detroit Country Club and conceded the hole. Sweeny lived his life of golf at the posh clubs such as Seminole in Florida where he played Nassaus against the likes of Ben Hogan. Phil was raised there and in Scottsdale, Arizona. Although otherwise right-handed, he played golf left-handed since he learned by watching his right-handed father swing, mirroring his style.

Phil Sr. Mickelson attended Arizona State University in Tempe on a golf scholarship and became the face of amateur golf in the United States, capturing three NCAA individual championships and three Haskins Awards , , as the outstanding collegiate golfer. Over the course of his collegiate career, he won 16 tournaments. Mickelson was the second collegiate golfer to earn first-team All-American honors all four years.

List of men's major championships winning golfers

In , he also became the first with a left-handed swing to win the U. Amateur title. At age 20, he was only the sixth amateur to win a tour event and the first in over five years after Scott Verplank at the Western Open in August With five holes remaining, Mickelson led by a stroke, but made a triple-bogey and was then three behind. The leaders ahead of him then stumbled, and he birdied 16 and 18 to win by a stroke. To date, it is the most recent win by an amateur at a PGA Tour event. With his two-year PGA Tour exemption from the Tucson win, he played in several tour events in while an amateur but failed to make a cut.

Although Phil has got on to win 49 professional events around the world, his great amateur career was truly remarkable. Marvin M. Amateur and the British Amateur. Giles was a native of Virginia, but graduated from the University of Georgia in , where he was a three-time All-American. He returned to his home state to graduate from the University of Virginia Law School in Giles finished second in the U.

Amateur three straight years while it was played at stroke play to before finally winning in His victory in the British Amateur came in and won numerous other amateur tournaments, including seven Virginia State Amateurs, as well as three Virginia Open titles. Four times Giles was chosen for the U. Walker Cup teams , , , , winning three times, and captained the team to victory. He also played on three winning Eisenhower Trophy teams , , and captained the team to a runner-up finish.

Giles played in 11 professional majors, making the cut in three of nine Masters Tournament appearances and in both times he played in the U. He was low amateur in the Masters Tournament T22 and in the U. Open 17th. He was also low amateur in three U. Senior Opens , , He never turned pro and has little regret about his path in life. He always has enjoyed playing golf, but never wanted it to feel like a job. He was one of seven famous golfing brothers; Phil , Frank , Joe , Mike , Doug , Jim , and Willie Interestingly enough, Willie was the only brother never to turn professional.

His older brothers forbade him to turn pro and pooled their money to send him to college. He graduated from Holy Cross in and won his first U. Amateur later that year at Oakmont Country Club. He won his second U. He won numerous other amateur events, mostly in the New York area. Turnesa played on three straight winning Walker Cup teams, , , and , where he also served as the playing captain.

This native of Huntington, West Virginia served in the U. Amateurs, including 33 consecutively from —77, and won the event in Eight times he was named to the U. Walker Cup team between to , captaining the team, and finished with an overall record of 11—4—3 7—0—1 in singles matches. He was runner-up in the British Amateur and three times runner-up in the Canadian Amateur Championship, in , , and He won the U. Senior Amateur in and medalist in , , and , and finished 2nd overall in the U.

Senior Open. He was the treasurer in —, vice-president in —, then served as president in and Coe won the U. He won four Trans-Mississippi Amateurs , , , and Cod was a 6-time Walker Cupper from to , including playing captain on the team, and was non-playing captain on a seventh team in He made 19 Masters Tournament appearances and owns almost every Masters amateur record, including most cuts made 15 ; top finishes 9 ; top finishes 3 ; eagles 6 , rounds played 67 and most times low amateur 6.

An amazing stat is that Coe won low amateur honors at Augusta in four consecutive decades: s, s, s and s. He also holds the amateur records for best finish 2nd in , lowest third round score 67 in , and lowest hole score in In , Coe rallied in the final round from six shots down to finish one stroke behind Gary Player. His hope was that an amateur would eventually win the event that he came so very close to capturing. Semple won the British Ladies Amateur. At present, she is one of only eleven golfers to hold both titles. In defense of her U. Semple Thompson was voted the Bob Jones Award recipient, the highest honor given by the United States Golf Association in recognition of distinguished sportsmanship in golf.

Frank Stranahan, the premier amateur of his era who contended for majors and was the first notable player to make fitness a regimen in golf.

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He was regarded by many as the best amateur since Bobby Jones. Stranahan was born Aug. Stranahan was still a teenager when he won the Ohio Amateur in The son of a wealthy industrialist family in Ohio — his father was the founder of Champion Spark Plug — Stranahan took advantage of this life of privilege with his devotion to golf to win more than 50 amateur titles, including multiples wins in the British Amateur, Western Amateur and North and South Amateur. The one title that eluded him was the U.

He lost in the championship match to Arnold Palmer in , and then turned pro. Stranahan, who packed barbells in his suitcase to work out on the road, won six times on the PGA Tour, twice as a pro. His biggest win was the Los Angeles Open. He tied with Nelson in the Masters, where Stranahan closed with a 68 to finish two shots behind. His best chance at a major was Hoylake that summer, when he went into the final round one shot behind Daly and matched his Six years later, he closed with a 69 to finish in a tie for second at Carnoustie, four shots behind Hogan.

In one of the more famous tales involving Stranahan, he was not allowed to compete in the Masters when he was accused of hitting more than one shot into the greens during the practice round. Stranahan said he was only hitting additional putts on the green, which was allowed. I was playing the best courses with the best players, and it was very satisfying to do well in those situations.

List of men's major championships winning golfers - Wikipedia

Stranahan was devoted to fitness as much as his golf. He ran in more than marathons, and he was winning trophies for body building and weightlifting well into his 70s. One video shows Stranahan celebrating his 78th birthday with a dead lift of pounds. Stranahan retired from competition in , though he left quite a mark. Beyond his results, he cut an impressive figure with his movie star looks and physique that he enjoyed showing off in tight-fitting shirts. Charles Blair Macdonald was both an accomplished amateur as well as golf course architect.

Macdonald also collaborated with another course architect who would also become famous names Seth Raynor and they created courses like the famed Yale University Course, Shinnecock Hills and the Mid Ocean Club in Bermuda. In , the Newport Country Club and St. Macdonald finished second in both, and on both occasions was publicly upset with the result that both tournaments were declared unofficial. Macdonald was named Vice President of the organization.

The first U. For better or worse, he was best known for almost winning the Masters Tournament and came within one stroke of being in a three-man playoff with Ben Hogan and Sam Snead for the championship. Patton won several amateur tournaments including the North and South Amateur three times and the Southern Amateur twice.

He also won the Carolinas Open twice. Patton played on five Walker Cup teams; , , , , and and was captain of the team. He played on the Eisenhower Trophy team in and Cyril Tolley was victorious twice in The Amateur Championship, in and Jones eventually won the tournament gotta love the stymie.

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Tolley was honored with being named to the first Walker Cup team in and again in , , , , and He captained the team in Dick Chapman March 23, — November 15, was an American amateur golfer. Chapman was a native of Greenwich, Connecticut, and was the U. Amateur golf champion at famed Winged Foot Golf Club where, coincidentally, he was a member. He holds a rare distinction as one of only three players to have won a USGA title on their home course. He holds a place in the Masters Tournament record book for the most appearances 19 as an amateur, tied with Charlie Coe.

Although Chapman was quite the international player, winning the British Amateur, he also won state amateur championships in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York and the Carolinas as well as the prestigious North and South Amateur. Amateur, Chapman and his son, Dixie, both qualified as one of few father-son duos to ever play in the same U.

Army Air Corps. After the war, Chapman picked up where he left off, with a string of victories in the British, French, Canadian, and Italian amateurs. Chapman is one of only two players who has won the U. From there, the team would play out the best shot. Chapman played on the winning Walker Cup teams in , , and , and finally was inducted into the Connecticut Golf Hall of Fame in Amateur Victories Each:.

Chase, the U. Was also a member of the very first U. Curtis Cup Team in He defeated Keith Fergus in the hole final, having beaten Curtis Strange and Andy Bean in previous rounds of the match-play championship. Ridley was a member of the U. World Amateur Eisenhower Trophy team in , and the U.

Walker Cup team in In the Walker Cup, he won two singles matches both against Sandy Lyle and lost his foursomes match.

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He also won the Monroe Invitational in He served as captain of the U. Walker Cup teams in and , and of the U. World Amateur team in He played in three Masters Tournaments and a U. Open as an amateur. Internationally, Ridley competed in the British Open in and the British Amateur in and Over the years, he has been elected as a member of virtually every board and committee in the USGA. Ridley, who is a member of Augusta National Golf Club, served as the competition committee chairman for The Masters in On August 23, , Augusta National announced that Ridley would succeed Billy Payne as chairman of the club,officially taking over when the club reopened for its —18 season on October Ridley remains the last U.

Amateur champion to have never become a professional golfer. He won the Amateur Championship twice, in and again in , by convincing margins. Over his short golf career, Tait recorded at least 28 tournament victories. He tied for third place in the Open Championship in both and Tait as a toddler golfer with a hand-made club, c. He was admitted to the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, at his second attempt, and is credited with introducing golf there. Tait was commissioned a second lieutenant in the 2nd battalion the Leinster Regiment in , and then transferred as a lieutenant to the 2nd battalion, the Black Watch, in He learned golf at an early age and was already swinging golf clubs as a 5-year-old child.

As an adult, Tait was an extremely powerful and long hitter of the ball. At The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews on 11 January , he hit the ball yards, the ball then rolling on frozen ground and coming to rest yards from the tee. He is also remembered in the adjacent churchyard by a granite Celtic cross on the Tait family plot on the second burial terrace down from Princes Street. Amateur in and Following his first win in the U. Amateur, he wrote a golf instruction book. In he finished fifth in the U.

Whigham was one of six brothers and four sisters. His sisters Molly and Sybil Whigham also played golf, and did so very well. The demonstration was organized by famed golf course architect Charles B. They had a daughter, Sybil. Whigham learned the game under his instructors Willie Campbell and Joe Lloyd. Whitton took up golfing at the age of 14, joining his father in the Caulfield Golf Club later the Metropolitan Golf Club the next year, and winning the club championships three times. The Victorian Golf Association created the Ivo Whitton Trophy in for the lowest stroke average in certain tournaments held each year.

Whitton himself presented the award to the first champion, Kevin Hartley, who went on to win it a eleven more times. A group of local Melbourne golfers regularly play-off in a 9-hole stroke play event for the Ivo Whitton Trophy to honour his memory. Pittsburgh native Nathan Smith has had one of the best amateur careers of modern times. Smith has won the U. Mid-Amateur four times in a span from to , the Sunnehanna Amateur, the and Pennsylvania Amateur, the West Penn Amateur four times —10 , and the R.

Jay Sigel Match Play three times , , With his partner Todd White, he also won the inaugural U. Amateur Four-Ball at the famed Olympic Club in To cap it off, Smith played in three consecutive Walker Cup matches representing the Unites States in , and Smith, who balances his golf game and his day job of a financial adviser, has played in five major championships, including four Masters Tournaments and one U.

He did come within one shot of making the cut at the Masters Tournament, but if it was any consolation, had the great fortune of being paired for the first two rounds with the legend Arnold Palmer. He was 19 years, 5 months, at the time of his victory. His record stood for an amazing 85 years until TigerWoods won his first of three Amateurs at age 18 years, 8 months at the TPC at Sawgrass. Gardner made the finals of the U. Unfortunately, he made it to two other important final matches but did not emerge victorious; the westernamateur and the RandA Amateur.

Golf was not the only sport Gardner excelled at. On June 1, , at an intercollegiate track and field competition in Philadelphia, he set the world pole vault record at 13 feet 1 inch 3. He and Howard Linn won the national doubles racquets championship in and Melnyk won the U. Amateur at Oakmont Country Club, shooting a 2-over-par to beat Vinny Giles by five shots at stroke play. He won the Georgia Open as an amateur.

He was low amateur in the British Open tie for 41st and at the Masters Tournament tie for 24th. Amateur, in and Ward was born in Elma, Washington. He excelled as an amateur golfer, winning the U. Amateur twice, the Western Am three times and his home state Washington Amateur twice.

see He played on the Walker Cup team in and Ward turned professional in and worked as a club pro until his death in from cancer. In , Ryan Moore had one of the best single seasons in amateur golf. The following spring in the Masters, he earned low amateur honors eventually tying for 13th!

A tremendous run for a tremendous player who has gone on to become a 5-time PGA Tour winner following his amateur success. He went on to graduate from Seminole High School in Sanford in Kuchar won the U. Amateur title in at Cog Hill in Chicago. After considering staying a career am like another Georgia Tech grad, Bobby Jones, he turned pro in In , year-old Curtis qualified fourth in her first appearance at the U.

In her sister Harriot won the Championship. Players carry up to fourteen clubs in a golf bag, or they have a caddie carry them. These clubs see picture at right include woods for long shots on the left , irons for medium-length shots top , and a putter for shots hit along the ground on the green bottom. Players also carry their own score card, and record every stroke they play on each hole. Each shot, whether it's a three-hundred metre drive or a two-centimetre putt, counts as one stroke.

For each hole, a number known as par indicates the number of shots a very good player would normally take to complete the hole. Short holes are usually "par 3", medium-length holes are "par 4", while longer holes are "par 5". If a player completes a hole in one shot less than par, they have made a birdie. Two shots under par is an eagle and three shots under par is an albatross. One shot over par is a bogey , two shots over par is a double bogey and three shots over par is a triple bogey.

If we add up the pars of all the holes on an eighteen-hole course, we find the par for the whole course. Most courses are par 72, with four par-3 holes, ten par-4 holes, and 4 par-5 holes. If a player shoots a round of 70 on a par 72 course, we can say they shot a "two-under-par" round. In most formats of the game, the winner is the player who completes a round, or a series of rounds, with the lowest number of strokes. As recreational golf became a popular hobby, professional golf became big business. Television broadcasts of major tournaments attract millions of viewers worldwide, and professional golfers play for millions of dollars in prize-money in hundreds of tournaments held all over the world.


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  5. The biggest prize-money is offered in tournaments which are part of major tours such as the European Tour, the U. PGA Tour, and the U. LPGA Tour. Players must qualify to play on these tours, but qualifying is very difficult. Those who can't qualify can join other smaller tours such as the high-paying Japanese Tour. The four most important tournaments in men's golf are called 'the majors', held every year. They are The Masters, the U.