Which PGA and LPGA players have won the Grand Slam?
The golf Grand Slam is an incredibly elusive accomplishment that only five male professional golfers have ever achieved.
On the women’s side of the game, seven LPGA golfers have accomplished the Grand Slam. Compared to other sports and their unique feats, the golf Grand Slam is one that seems almost impossible.
Golf is a difficult game that relies on an individual’s skills as he or she takes on a field of competitors. Golfers must also compete against the elements and a golf course that is challenging their every ounce of skill.
The golf Grand Slam is a great accomplishment and the following men and women are the only ones to ever reach its rarified air.
PGA Career Grand Slam Winners
American golfer Gene Sarazen completed his Career Grand Slam by winning the 1935 Masters. It was his final major victory. Sarazen’s win in 1935 made him the first man to do it in the modern era. In total, Sarazen won seven major trophies and a total of 48 professional golf tournaments. Many of those tournament wins and major victories came against his rival Bobby Jones. The two men often found themselves vying over trophies at golf tournaments. Sarazen’s Masters’ win helped him achieve something Jones could never do, and that was to win at Augusta National.
Ben Hogan completed the Career Grand Slam in 1953. That year saw “The Hawk” win three of the four major tournaments. Hogan lifted prizes that PGA season at the Masters, U.S. Open and British Open. It was the British Open which had been so elusive to Hogan as the other tournaments he saw wins in previously. During Hogan’s 41-year golf career, he won 69 professional tournaments. Nine of those wins came at major events. Hogan’s feat of winning the Masters, U.S. Open and British Open in 1953 makes him the only golfer to win those competitions in the same 12-month time span.
Gary Player achieved the Grand Slam in 1965 when he won the U.S. Open. Player had to wait three years to finally add the fourth piece to the Grand Slam puzzle. The South African has won an incredible 165 professional golf tournaments and nine major titles. Player still golfs today at age 82 and enjoys playing on the PGA Tour Champions. He joined the circuit – formerly known as the Senior PGA Tour – in 1985.
Jack Nicklaus is one of two PGA players to win the Career Grand Slam more than one time. In fact, Nicklaus won three Grand Slams during his PGA Tour career. Nicklaus totaled 18 major victories during his career along with 117 professional wins. “The Golden Bear’s” final major victory came in 1986 when he won the Masters for a sixth time.
Like Nicklaus, Tiger Woods has record three Career Grand Slams. Woods has racked up 14 career major victories, but he last won a big four event 10 years ago. The 42-year-old has won a total of 106 professional golf events. Woods may never return to the heights he once flew, but he does have a chance of becoming the first and only four-time Grand Slam winner, if he can recover his past form.
There are three current PGA golfers who could win a Career Grand Slam. Each is missing the achievement by just one major win.
After winning the Masters, U.S. Open and British Open, Spieth only needs a victory at the PGA Championship to gain a Grand Slam title. He will have his chance in August.
Phil Mickelson has been unable to claim victory at the U.S. Open. Often cited as the toughest major to win, Mickelson will tee off in June with a chance at finally lifting the U.S. Open trophy.
The Masters continues to be Rory McIlroy’s Achilles’ heel. The Northern Irishman once again failed to win the tournament this year as he finished tied for fifth. McIlroy must wait until 2019 for his next chance to win at Augusta National.
LPGA Career Grand Slam
The LPGA’s Career Grand Slam feat is different from their PGA counterpart. The women’s game features five major tournaments rather than four. However, like the PGA, women’s golf recognizes players who win four majors as Grand Slam winners.
Only one woman has won all five major tournaments on the LPGA circuit. Karrie Webb became the Super Grand Slam winner in 2002 when she claimed victory at the Women’s British Open. The year prior to winning the fifth major, Webb completed the four major tournaments Grand Slam by winning the LPGA Championship. Webb was 26 when she accomplished the feat.
Mickey Wright accomplished the women’s Grand Slam on two occasions. An early women’s sports superstar, Wright won 13 major titles on the ladies’ golf circuit.
Louise Suggs wasn’t just a great women’s golfer and Grand Slam winner, but she was also a pioneer of the sport. Suggs helped found the LPGA, and without the Georgia native, women’s golf wouldn’t be what it is today. Suggs recorded 61 professional wins and 11 major titles.
Juli Inkster achieved the women’s Grand Slam in 1999 when she won the LPGA Championship and the U.S. Women’s Open. Inkster’s wins put her alongside Pat Bradley as the only two women’s golfers to achieve the Grand Slam during the du Maurier tournament era. Bradley accomplished the feat in 1986 as she won the Kraft Nabisco Championship and the LPGA Championship. Bradley won six majors during her career, with three of those coming during her great season of 1986 – she also won the du Maurier for the third time.
More recently, Annika Sorenstam achieved the Grand Slam in 2003. Playing in what has been called the Women’s British Open Championship Era, she won 10 majors during her career with the last coming at the U.S. Women’s Open. In the same season that Sorenstam won the Grand Slam, she also competed in the PGA’s Bank of America Colonial event, thus becoming the first women since 1945 to play in a men’s tournament.
The last woman to win the Grand Slam was South Korea’s Inbee Park. Once again, the women’s major tournaments received a facelift with the era being known as the Evian Championship. The seven-time major winner achieved the rare feat by winning the Women’s British Open in 2015. Park can still achieve the Super Grand Slam as the LPGA features five major tournaments currently.
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