DENIS WATSON FOR HALL OF FAME
Former PGA Tour winner Denis Watson will be inducted into the Southern African Golf Hall of Fame in April, when the biennial ceremony is held at Plettenberg Bay during the week of the SA Senior Open.
Watson, 61, from Zimbabwe, will be introduced by contemporaries Mark McNulty and Hugh Baiocchi. He won three times on the PGA Tour in 1984, including the World Series of Golf. A year later he narrowly lost the US Open, finishing second by a shot to Andy North after incurring a two-shot penalty in the first round for waiting longer than the prescribed 10 seconds for his ball to drop as it hung on the edge of the hole.
A wrist injury sustained hitting out of the rough at Humewood, while winning the 1985 Goodyear Classic, was to halt his career. He required surgery on his wrist and neck. He did play again, but was never able to get his game back to where it had been, and in the 1990s he retired. However, after turning 50 in 2005 he enjoyed a brief resurgence on the Champions Tour, winning the 2007 Senior PGA Championship (right), one of the tour’s “majors.”
Also being inducted are four golfers/ administrators from previous eras who have passed on. They are Angela
Hockey, a stalwart over 40 years at Royal Cape GC and in Western Province women’s golf, from the 1920s to 1960s; Springbok Esther Gaille (Royal Johannesburg) from the 1950s who became president of the SA Ladies Golf Union;
H Gordon Stewart (Royal Cape), SA Amateur champion of a century ago; and Arthur Stewart (Krugersdorp), a Springbok who won the SA Amateur in 1957 and then the SA Open in 1958, beating both Gary Player and Bobby Locke.
A special award will go to former Springbok Judy Angel, who died last October aged 71. She was a celebrated teacher in the United States. The Harry Brews Award will go to Nomads Golf.