Vijay Singh wasn't exactly the people's choice, but he got just enough votes to squeak into the World Golf Hall of Fame.
The 42-year-old Fijian with 25 PGA Tour victories and three major championships becomes the youngest golfer to be elected on the PGA Tour/Champions Tour ballot although he gained admission to the Hall on a technicality. Under the rules, a player needs to receive 65 percent of the votes. Singh was named on 56 percent of the ballots. But the Hall, instead of sticking to its 65 percent rule, has qualifying language that states, "In the event no candidate receives 65%, the nominee receiving the most votes will be inducted, providing he is named on at least 50% of the ballots returned."
Larry Nelson, a three-time major championship winner with 10 PGA Tour victories and 19 Champions Tour titles, was named on 55 percent of the ballots, losing out to Singh by one percent of the vote. Curtis Strange (50 percent), Henry Picard (49) and Craig Wood (41) rounded out the top five vote getters.
Singh, who won nine times in the United States last year and has earned nearly $40 million on the PGA Tour, will be inducted in November. "On the heels of one of golf's finest single seasons, this is a richly deserved honor for Vijay and one he has dedicated his life to earning," said PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem.
- Ron Sirak is the executive editor of Golf World magazine