Graham Takes a Trip Back into the Past
David Graham took a trip down memory lane while being inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame at a special ceremony ahead of The 144th Open Championship at St Andrews.
The Australian made his Open Championship debut at the 1970 Championship over the Old Course and admitted his trip to attend this year’s ceremony had taken him back in time.
“This is kind of cool and it’s even more special because it’s a St Andrews,” said the man who won two Major titles at the 1979 PGA Championship at Oakland Hills and the 1981 US Open at Merion.
“My wife and I came here in 1970. It was my first Major Championship. It brings back lots of great memories although I’ve seen more, I think, of St Andrews in the last couple of days than I did in all the years we were here for Open Championships and Dunhill Cups. When you’re a player you don’t have the luxury of being much of a tourist so the last few days have been pretty special.
“Last night at dinner, I walked right into Peter Thomson, the five-time Open Champion, who is 86 years old. Tonight, even Arnold Palmer is going to come which I think shows how much they love St Andrews and the game of golf.
“It’s going to be a pretty emotional night sitting in front of those two people,” he added.
The veteran Australian was one of four individuals inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. He attended a special press conference ahead of the ceremony together with Mark O’Meara, The Champion Golfer of the Year for 1998, while Dame Laura Davies, who was travelling from America, did not make the ceremony but she was cheered into the room when she arrived in time for the subsequent drinks reception. The fourth recipient was the late Arthur Tillinghast, the revered American course architect whose creations included Baltusrol, Winged Foot and Bethpage Black.
“I can’t think of a better place (to be inducted),” said O’Meara. “It a great honour for us to come into the World Golf Hall of Fame and to have the ceremony here at St Andrews. We’re really excited about it.”