Greg Norman

Greg-Norman

Born: February 10th, 1955 in Mount Isa, Australia
Nationality: Australian
Famous For: Winning over ninety times in his professional career
Awards: Arnold Palmer Award, PGA Tour of Australia Order of Merit, European Tour Order of Merit, VArdon Trophy, World Golf Hall of Fame,Old Tom Morris Award

Greg Norman is an Australian professional golfer. He is nicknamed the “Great White Shark” for his aggressive playing style and blond hair. Norman has won two major championships and more than 80 other international tournaments. During the 1980’s and 1990’s he spent more than 300 weeks as the world’s number one ranked golfer.

Early Life

Norman was born in the inland Queensland city of Mount Isa on February 10th, 1955. He showed good sporting ability from an early age, playing cricket, rugby, and Australian football. However, at the age of 15, he took up golf, after acting as caddy for his mother who was herself of good athlete. The young man had achieved a zero handicap within two years of beginning the game.

Norman did well in several amateur competitions over the next few years, turning professional in 1976. That year he won his first pro tournament: the West Lakes Classic. He scored his maiden European Tour victory the following year. His first eye-catching performance at a major came in 1981, when he finished fourth in the Masters. This was the point at which he earned his nickname, thanks to his frequently aggressive approach shots.

Strengths and Weaknesses

In 1983, Norman became a full-time competitor on the PGA Tour in the United States, winning two tournaments a year later. He was by now both applauded for his charisma and criticized for his sometimes weak performances when under pressure. This showed itself particularly in 1986: in the four majors that year, he started the final day at the top of the leader board, but was overtaken three times. In the Masters at Augusta, he was beaten only by a remarkable pitch shot by Larry Mize during the playoff. However, on the same course in 1996, he let slip a six-shot lead and shot a disastrous 78 in the last round.

Regardless of these occasional lapses, Norman remained an extremely successful golfer, winning the Open Championship in Britain on two occasions and spending long stretches at the height of his career ranked the best golfer in the world. He was also three times the top money earner on the PGA Tour, and in 1995 he received the honor of being chosen as Player of the Year. He ceased to be a true force at the very top level of the game after he suffered shoulder problems in 1998, but was still good enough to compete in open events when well into his fifties.

Related Interests

Norman set up a number of business interests which related to his playing career. Among the most well known of these was the company he started in 1987 to design golf courses, which was hired by a large number of venues. He was interested in the commercial avenues that golf opened up for him, and established other interests too, such as a line of apparel and even a wine-growing estate. His “Great White Shark Enterprises” brand brought all these businesses together under one name after his playing career diminished. Norman continues to be active in that with his business ventures.