Archive for Wednesday, May 7, 2003

Price elected to Hall, finally

May 7, 2003


— Nick Price no longer has to wonder what it takes to get into the World Golf Hall of Fame.

Price, who won three major championships and dominated golf in the 1990s, was elected Tuesday through the PGA Tour ballot and will be the 99th member of the hall.

No other player was elected through the PGA Tour or International ballot.

Price will be inducted Oct. 20 at the World Golf Village along with two-time PGA champion Leo Diegel, former Japanese standout Chako Higuchi and Annika Sorenstam, who qualifies as soon as she plays 15 events on the LPGA Tour this year.

"I was hoping that it was going to be my time soon," Price said at the Wachovia Championship. "It happened sooner rather than later."

Price received 76 percent of the vote on the PGA Tour ballot, easily getting the minimum 65 percent. Tom Kite received 59 percent of the vote, followed by Henry Picard (43 percent), Curtis Strange (38 percent) and Larry Nelson (37 percent).

Three Japanese players led the International voting, but no one reached 65 percent.

Price wasn't even aware of the Hall of Fame until he visited its old site at Pinehurst some 20 years ago, but it became a goal in recent years -- especially as some of his contemporaries with fewer major championships were inducted.

Payne Stewart, with three majors but only 11 victories, was inducted in 2001. A year ago it was Ben Crenshaw, who won two Masters.

Price has three majors among his 18 victories on the PGA Tour, and 23 other victories around the world. He won 16 times during the 1990s, more than any other player, and was the most dominant player in golf until Tiger Woods came along.

Price separated himself in more than just victories. He won by big margins at some of the biggest tournaments, such as his five-stroke victory in the 1993 Players Championship, and his wire-to-wire victory at Southern Hills in the 1994 PGA Championship, winning by six.

He said his three most important victories were his first on tour, the '83 World Series of Golf at Firestone, his first major at the '92 PGA Championship and the '93 Players Championship.

He was at his best in the mid-90s, winning nine times in just under 15 months.

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