Peter Thomson (golfer)

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Peter Thomson
— Golfer —
Personal information
Full name Peter William Thomson
Born (1929-08-23) 23 August 1929 (age 84)
Brunswick, Melbourne, Australia
Height 1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)
Nationality  Australia
Spouse Mary Thomson
Children Diana, Andrew, Peta-Ann, Fiona
Career
Turned professional 1947
Former tour(s) PGA Tour
European Tour
Australasian Tour
Senior PGA Tour
Professional wins 88
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour 6
European Tour 1
Japan Golf Tour 1
PGA Tour of Australasia 34
Champions Tour 11
Best results in Major Championships
(Wins: 5)
Masters Tournament 5th: 1957
U.S. Open T4: 1956
The Open Championship Won: 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, 1965
PGA Championship DNP
Achievements and awards
World Golf Hall of Fame 1988 (member page)
Arnold Palmer Award
(Champions Tour)
1986

Peter William Thomson AO, CBE (born 23 August 1929) is an Australian professional golfer. He is best remembered for his five wins in The Open Championship.[1]

Thomson was born in Brunswick, Australia. His Open Championship wins came in 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, and 1965. He was the only man to win the tournament for three consecutive years in the 20th century.

Thomson was a prolific tournament champion around the world, winning the national championships of ten countries, including the New Zealand Open nine times. He competed on the PGA Tour in 1953 and 1954 with relatively little success (finishing 44th and 25th on the Money List), and after that was an infrequent competitor. However in 1956, playing in just eight events, he won the rich Texas International, and achieved his best finish in one of the three majors staged in the United States (fourth at the U.S. Open), to finish ninth on the Money List.

In the era that Thomson won his first four Open Championships, very few of the leading professionals from the United States travelled to Britain to play in that event. At that time, the prize money in the Open was insufficient even for an American to cover expenses if he won. However, Thomson demonstrated with his win in 1965 that he could beat a field of the world's very best players, as that victory came against a field that included Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Tony Lema, three of the top four American golfers from the 1964 Money List.

Thomson enjoyed a successful senior career. In 1985 he won nine times on the Senior PGA Tour in the United States, and finished top of the money list. His last tournament victory came at the 1988 British PGA Seniors Championship. He was president of the Australian PGA from 1962 to 1994 and a victorious non-playing captain of the international team in the 1998 Presidents Cup.

He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1988 and the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1985.[2]

Thomson was a guest at the presentation ceremony of the 135th Open Championship, which was won by Tiger Woods. The event marked the 50th anniversary of Thomson's third Open victory.

Among golf's top players, Thomson has perhaps been the most active as a golf writer, having contributed to the Melbourne Age for some 50 years, since the early 1950s. He is an honorary member of Royal Melbourne Golf Club, one of the world's top courses. Thomson has designed over a hundred golf courses in Australia and around the world.

Professional wins (88)[edit]

PGA Tour wins (6)[edit]

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of victory Runner(s)-up
1 9 Jul 1954 The Open Championship −9 (72-71-69-71=283) 1 stroke South Africa Bobby Locke, Wales Dai Rees, England Syd Scott
2 8 Jul 1955 The Open Championship −7 (71-68-70-72=281) 2 strokes Scotland John Fallon
3 4 Jun 1956 Texas International Open −13 (67-68-69-63=267) Playoff United States Cary Middlecoff, United States Gene Littler
4 6 Jul 1956 The Open Championship +2 (70-70-72-74=286) 3 strokes Belgium Flory Van Donck
5 4 Jul 1958 The Open Championship −6 (33-72-67-73=278) Playoff Wales Dave Thomas
6 9 Jul 1965 The Open Championship −3 (74-68-72-71=285) 2 strokes Wales Brian Huggett, Republic of Ireland Christy O'Connor Snr

Major championships are shown in bold. The Open Championship was not sanctioned by the PGA Tour in Thomson's era, but pre-1995 Open wins were retrospectively classified as PGA Tour wins in 2002.

Australasia wins (34)[edit]

European wins (28)[edit]

Note: The Open Championship wins are repeated here. Only the last win was an official European Tour event as the tour formally started in 1972.[3]

Japan wins (4)[edit]

Note: Only the last win was an official Japan Tour event as the tour formally started in 1973.

Other wins (9)[edit]

Senior PGA Tour wins (11)[edit]

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
victory
Runner(s)-up
1 16 Sep 1984 World Seniors Invitational −7 (69-69-69-74=281) 1 stroke United States Arnold Palmer
2 9 Dec 1984 General Foods PGA Seniors' Championship −2 (67-73-74-72=286) 3 strokes United States Don January
3 17 Mar 1985 The Vintage Invitational −7 (69-73-69-69=280) 1 stroke United States Billy Casper, United States Arnold Palmer
4 31 Mar 1985 American Golf Carta Blanca Johnny Mathis Classic −11 (70-64-71=205) 1 stroke United States Don January
5 5 May 1985 MONY Senior Tournament of Champions −4 (70-70-71-73=284) 3 strokes United States Don January, United States Dan Sikes
6 9 Jun 1985 The Champions Classic −6 (68-72-70=210) 2 strokes United States Billy Casper, United States Jim Ferree
7 16 Jun 1985 Senior Players Reunion Pro-Am −14 (68-66-68=202) 2 strokes United States Lee Elder
8 21 Jul 1985 MONY Syracuse Senior's Classic −9 (70-64-70=203) 2 strokes United States Miller Barber, United States Gene Littler
9 18 Aug 1985 du Maurier Champions −13 (64-70-69=203) 1 stroke United States Ben Smith
10 15 Sep 1985 United Virginia Bank Seniors −9 (69-69-69=207) 4 strokes United States George Lanning
11 20 Oct 1985 Barnett Suntree Senior Classic −9 (70-68-69=207) 1 stroke United States Charlie Sifford

Senior PGA Tour playoff record (0–1)

No. Year Tournament Opponent Result
1 1985 Merrill Lynch/Golf Digest Commemorative Pro-Am United States Lee Elder Lost to eagle on first extra hole

Senior major championship is shown in bold.

Other senior wins (1)[edit]

Major championships[edit]

Wins (5)[edit]

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner(s)-up
1954 The Open Championship Tied for lead −9 (72-71-69-71=283) 1 stroke South Africa Bobby Locke, Wales Dai Rees, England Syd Scott
1955 The Open Championship (2) 1 shot lead −7 (71-68-70-72=281) 2 strokes England John Fallon
1956 The Open Championship (3) 3 shot lead −2 (70-70-72-74=286) 3 strokes Belgium Flory Van Donck
1958 The Open Championship (4) 2 shot lead −6 (66-72-67-73=278) Playoff 1 Wales Dave Thomas
1965 The Open Championship (5) 1 shot lead −7 (74-68-72-71=285) 2 strokes Republic of Ireland Christy O'Connor Snr, Wales Brian Huggett

1 Defeated Dave Thomas in 36-hole playoff: Thomson (139), Thomas (143)

Results timeline[edit]

Tournament 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959
Masters Tournament DNP DNP T36 T16 T18 DNP 5 T23 DQ
U.S. Open DNP DNP T26 CUT DNP T4 T22 DNP DNP
The Open Championship T6 2 T2 1 1 1 2 1 T23
Tournament 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
Masters Tournament DNP T19 DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT
U.S. Open DNP CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
The Open Championship T9 T7 T6 5 T24 1 T8 T8 T24 T3
Tournament 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
Masters Tournament DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
U.S. Open DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
The Open Championship T9 T9 T31 T31 CUT CUT CUT T13 T24 T26
Tournament 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984
Masters Tournament DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
U.S. Open DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
The Open Championship DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT

Note: Thomson never played in the PGA Championship.

DNP = Did not play
DQ = Disqualified
CUT = missed the half-way cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place
Green background for wins. Yellow background for top-10.

Summary[edit]

Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 0 0 0 1 1 5 8 6
U.S. Open 0 0 0 1 1 2 5 3
The Open Championship 5 3 1 10 18 23 30 26
PGA Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 5 3 1 12 20 30 43 35
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 10 (1954 Open Championship – 1958 Open Championship)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 4 (1955 Open Championship – 1957 Masters)

Champions Tour major championships[edit]

Wins (1)[edit]

Year Championship Winning score Margin Runner-up
1984a General Foods PGA Seniors' Championship −2 (67-73-74-72=286) 3 strokes United States Don January

a This was the December edition of the tournament.

Team appearances[edit]

  • World Cup (representing Australia): 1953, 1954 (winners), 1955, 1956, 1957, 1959 (winners), 1960, 1961, 1962, 1965, 1969

Honours[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "1954 Peter Thomson". The Open. Retrieved 17 October 2013. 
  2. ^ "Peter Thomson AO CBE". Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Retrieved 23 December 2013. 
  3. ^ "Peter Thomson European Wins". The World Golf Hall of Fame. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  4. ^ Thomson, Peter William MBE, It's an Honour, 1 January 1957.
  5. ^ Thomson, Peter William CBE, It's an Honour, 31 December 1979.
  6. ^ Thomson, Peter William, It's an Honour, 1 January 2001.
  7. ^ Thomson, Peter William AO, It's an Honour, 11 June 2001.

External links[edit]