Steve Elkington

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Steve Elkington
PlayersElkington.JPG
Elkington in 2008
Personal information
Full name Stephen John Elkington
Born (1962-12-08) 8 December 1962 (age 54)
Inverell, New South Wales, Australia
Height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 14 st)
Nationality  Australia
Residence Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Houston, Texas, U.S.
Spouse Lisa Elkington
Children 2
Career
College University of Houston
Turned professional 1985
Current tour(s) PGA Tour Champions
(joined 2013)
Former tour(s) PGA Tour (19872011)
Professional wins 17
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour 10
Asian Tour 1
PGA Tour of Australasia 1
Other 5
Best results in major championships
(wins: 1)
Masters Tournament T3: 1993
U.S. Open T21: 1989, 1990
The Open Championship T2: 2002
PGA Championship Won: 1995
Achievements and awards
Vardon Trophy 1995

Stephen John Elkington (born 8 December 1962) is an Australian professional golfer on the PGA Tour Champions. Formerly on the PGA Tour, he spent more than fifty weeks in the top-10 of the Official World Golf Ranking from 1995 to 1998.[1] Elkington won a major title at the PGA Championship in 1995,[2] and is a two-time winner of The Players Championship.[3][4]

Early years[edit]

Born in Inverell, New South Wales,[5] Elkington grew up in Wagga Wagga.[6] He moved to the United States to attend college in Texas at the University of Houston,[5] where he played on the Cougar golf team that won national titles in 1982, 1984, and 1985.[7] Elkington was the first prominent Australian to play college golf in the U.S., and turned professional in 1985.[5]

Professional career[edit]

Elkington was the runner-up at the PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament in December 1986 to earn his tour card for 1987.[8] He had ten victories on the PGA Tour, all in the 1990s, and won four events twice. Elkington had ten top-10 finishes in major championships, with the best results at the PGA Championship; he won in 1995 at Riviera,[2] and a tied for second in 2005 at Baltusrol, behind winner Phil Mickelson,[9][10] which moved him back into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking. He is a two-time winner of The Players Championship, the PGA Tour's marquee event, with victories in 1991 and 1997. Of the five to win twice at TPC Sawgrass, his span of six years between wins is the shortest.

Elkington was a participant in the first four editions of the Presidents Cup, on the International Team in 1994, 1996, 1998, and 2000. In 1995, he was awarded the Vardon Trophy; this award is given annually by the PGA of America to the tour player with the lowest scoring average.

Elkington's career has been hampered by constant battles with allergies, notably to grass, which caused several absences from tournament play. He has had sinus surgeries, constant infections, and bouts with viral meningitis, as well as searing headaches.[2]

As of 2013, Elkington had sponsorship/endorsement deals with apparel brand Oxford Golf, Insperity, World Golf Tour, Grieve Family Winery, and Par West Custom Golf Shoes.[11]

He turned fifty in late 2012 and made his debut on the Champions Tour in June 2013.[12]

Controversies[edit]

In June 2006, playing in a sectional to qualify for the U.S. Open, Elkington tried to wear shoes with metal spikes. When his attempt was rebuffed, he left rather than change to soft-spiked shoes, and argued that since spiked shoes were allowed in the U.S. Open, the following week, that they should be allowed at sectional events.[13]

In December 2013, Elkington was widely condemned for remarks he made on Twitter following a fatal helicopter crash in Glasgow's Clutha pub. He wrote: "Helicopter crashes into Scottish pub... Locals report no beer was spilled." The tweet was quickly deleted but not before being shared by users of the social networking site. The comment provoked a furious backlash from his fellow players and commentators alike.[14]

Two months later in February 2014, Elkington tweeted that openly gay football player Michael Sam was "leading the handbag throw" at the NFL Combine, which multiple sources described as homophobic.[15][16][17] He was suspended by the PGA Tour for two weeks and fined $10,000 after his derogatory tweet.[18]

Television[edit]

In 2014, RFD-TV began airing The Rural Golfer, starting Elkington.[19] The low-budget production followed Elkington as he toured the United States, digging up golf stories. In 2015, CBS Sports Network began airing the second season of the show, retitled Secret Golf with Steve Elkington. [20]

Personal[edit]

Elkington met his wife, Lisa, while at the University of Houston, and they have two children.[21] The family has residences in both Australia and the U.S., at Sydney and Houston. His son Sam played golf on his high school team in Houston,[22] and in 2015-2016 was a freshman on the golf team at the University of Houston.[23]

Professional wins (17)[edit]

PGA Tour wins (10)[edit]

Legend
Major championships (1)
Players Championships (2)
Other PGA Tour (7)
No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin
of victory
Runner(s)-up
1 22 Apr 1990 KMart Greater Greensboro Open 74-71-71-66=282 −6 2 strokes United States Mike Reid, United States Jeff Sluman
2 31 Mar 1991 The Players Championship 66-70-72-68=276 −12 1 stroke United States Fuzzy Zoeller
3 12 Jan 1992 Infiniti Tournament of Champions 69-71-67-72=279 −9 Playoff United States Brad Faxon
4 2 Oct 1994 Buick Southern Open 66-66-68=200 −16 5 strokes United States Steve Rintoul
5 8 Jan 1995 Mercedes Championships (2) 69-71-71-67=278 −10 Playoff United States Bruce Lietzke
6 13 Aug 1995 PGA Championship 68-67-68-64=267 −17 Playoff Scotland Colin Montgomerie
7 9 Mar 1997 Doral-Ryder Open 70-66-70-69=275 −13 2 strokes United States Larry Nelson, Zimbabwe Nick Price
8 30 Mar 1997 The Players Championship (2) 66-69-68-69=272 −16 7 strokes United States Scott Hoch
9 4 Oct 1998 Buick Challenge (2) 66-70-66-65=267 −21 Playoff United States Fred Funk
10 7 Mar 1999 Doral-Ryder Open (2) 72-70-69-64=275 −13 1 stroke United States Greg Kraft

PGA Tour playoff record (4–4)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 1992 Infiniti Tournament of Champions United States Brad Faxon Won with birdie on first extra hole
2 1992 Buick Open United States Brad Faxon, United States Dan Forsman Forsman won with par on second extra hole
Faxon eliminated with par on first hole
3 1992 H.E.B. Texas Open Zimbabwe Nick Price Lost to par on second extra hole
4 1993 KMart Greater Greensboro Open United States Rocco Mediate Lost to birdie on fourth extra hole
5 1995 Mercedes Championships United States Bruce Lietzke Won with birdie on second extra hole
6 1995 PGA Championship Scotland Colin Montgomerie Won with birdie on first extra hole
7 1998 Buick Challenge United States Fred Funk Won with par on first extra hole
8 2002 The Open Championship Australia Stuart Appleby, South Africa Ernie Els,
France Thomas Levet
Els beat Levet on first sudden-death hole,
after Appleby and Elkington were eliminated from a four-hole playoff

PGA Tour of Australasia wins (1)[edit]

Asian Tour wins (1)[edit]

  • 1996 Honda Invitational

Other wins (5)[edit]

Major championships[edit]

Wins (1)[edit]

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner-up
1995 PGA Championship 6 shot deficit −17 (68-67-68-64=267) Playoff1 Scotland Colin Montgomerie

1 Defeated Montgomerie with birdie on first extra hole.

Results timeline[edit]

Tournament 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
Masters Tournament DNP DNP DNP T22 T37 T3 CUT T5 CUT T12 30 T11
U.S. Open DNP T21 T21 T55 CUT T33 DNP T36 T40 T24 CUT T51
The Open Championship DNP DNP CUT T44 T34 T48 T67 T6 CUT CUT WD CUT
PGA Championship T31 T41 CUT T32 T18 T14 T7 1 T3 T45 3 DNP
Tournament 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
Masters Tournament T52 DNP DNP CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
U.S. Open DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T33 DNP CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP
The Open Championship T60 CUT T2 WD DNP DNP CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
PGA Championship DNP WD T48 DNP DNP T2 DNP CUT T39 CUT T5 CUT

DNP = Did not play
WD = Withdrew
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 1 2 2 5 11 8
U.S. Open 0 0 0 0 0 3 12 9
The Open Championship 0 1 0 1 2 2 15 7
PGA Championship 1 1 2 5 6 8 19 13
Totals 1 2 3 8 10 18 57 37
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 6 (twice)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 2 (twice)

Team appearances[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 69 Players Who Have Reached The Top-10 In World Ranking
  2. ^ a b c Reilly, Rick (August 21, 1995). "Nothing to sneeze at". Sports Illustrated. p. 34. 
  3. ^ Garrity, John (April 8, 1991). "From shadows to glory". Sports Illustrated. p. 28. 
  4. ^ Reilly, Rick (April 7, 1997). "Show of shows". Sports Illustrated. p. 70. 
  5. ^ a b c "Profile on PGA Tour's official site". Retrieved 9 May 2013. 
  6. ^ "Steve Elkington profile". Sporting Hall of Fame. Museum of the Riverina. Retrieved 9 May 2013. 
  7. ^ Duarte, Joseph (May 25, 2016). "University of Houston looks to return to golf glory". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  8. ^ "PGA Qualifying". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. December 9, 1986. p. B4. 
  9. ^ "Biographical information from PGA Tour's official site". Retrieved 5 May 2014. 
  10. ^ "Golf Major Championships". Retrieved 5 September 2011. 
  11. ^ Emmett, James (May 16, 2013). "Golf veteran Elkington nails a new deal for a new era - Sports Personal Endorsement news -". SportsPro. SportsPro Media. Retrieved 2016-09-02. 
  12. ^ Crenshaw, Jr., Solomon (June 5, 2013). "Rookie Steve Elkington says there's a lot of shot-making on the Champions Tour". al.com. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  13. ^ Campbell, Steve (June 6, 2006). "Elkington's metal spikes raise clatter". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  14. ^ McEwan, Michael (2 December 2013). "Elkington blasted for Glasgow helicopter tweet". bunkered. Retrieved 2 December 2013. 
  15. ^ Coscarelli, Joe (25 February 2014). "Professional Golfer Steve Elkington Really Thinks He Nailed This Michael Sam Gay Joke". New York. Retrieved 25 February 2014. 
  16. ^ Schilken, Chuck (25 February 2014). "Golfer Steve Elkington tweets homophobic joke about Michael Sam". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 25 February 2014. 
  17. ^ Uribarri, Jaime (25 February 2014). "Golfer Steve Elkington writes homophobic tweet about Michael Sam". New York Daily News. Retrieved 25 February 2014. 
  18. ^ McDowell, Coleman (July 6, 2015). "Steve Elkington Confirms He Was Suspended Over Michael Sam Tweet". Golf.com. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  19. ^ Sherman, Ed (July 24, 2014). "No handicaps for these players: Steve Elkington show finds true winners in golf". www.shermanreport.com. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  20. ^ Bastable, Alan (July 23, 2015). "Steve Elkington: The Golf Magazine Interview". Golf.com. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  21. ^ Verdi, Bob (May 17, 2004). "A Throwback from the Outback". Golf Digest. ESPN. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  22. ^ Stone, Peter (June 9, 2012). "Son takes his turn with the master stroke". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 
  23. ^ "Sam Elkington Bio - Men's Golf". University of Houston Official Athletic Site. Retrieved September 2, 2016. 

External links[edit]