Legendary South African golfer Gary Player is to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom at The White House.
Together with Sweden’s Annika Sorenstam, Player will receive the medal from US President Donald Trump on 23 March, becoming the first two international athletes to receive the prestigious award.
“I am incredibly humbled and grateful to be recognised in this way,” said Player. “For Annika and I to join Jack, Arnie, Charlie Sifford and Tiger Woods as the only golfers to have been awarded this honour is really very special. While remaining a proud South African, I have always been overwhelmed by the love and support that I have received from the American people. As an international athlete, to receive the highest honour awarded to civilians in the United States is humbling indeed and I will cherish this award from the president.”
During his career, Gary Player won 24 times on the PGA Tour and 19 times on the Champions Tour, including nine majors and nine senior majors, and is one of only five golfers to have achieved the career Grand Slam by winning all four of golf’s majors.
In a career spanning seven decades and with 165 worldwide victories, Player has received numerous awards and accolades. In 2000, he was voted "Sportsman of the 20th Century" in South Africa and, in 2006, received the Payne Stewart Award from the PGA Tour. In 2012, he received the PGA Tour Lifetime Achievement Award, becoming the first international golfer to receive this accolade.