Monty’s Hall Of Fame Inclusion Has Major Misgivings

Colin Montgomerie received the ultimate honour when he along with four others was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. The joining Monty in the class of 2013 were former Masters Champion Fred Couples, US Open champion and broadcaster Ken Venturi, former European Tour executive director Ken Schofield and two-time British Open champion and architect Willie Park Jr.

Montgomerie was an eight-time European Tour order of merit winner, had 31 victories on the European Tour and recorded five runner-up spots in the Majors among a total of 10 top-10 finishes.

However the Scotsman’s lack of Major wins on his CV has caused some legends of the game to question his inclusion.

Montgomerie lost the 1994 U.S. Open and the 1995 PGA Championship in a playoff. He was second to Ernie Els again in the 1997 U.S. Open at Congressional. And the most painful of all came in 2006 at Winged Foot, when he made double bogey from the middle of the 18th fairway and finished one shot behind Geoff Ogilvy.

Tony Jacklin, who won two Majors, said he did not vote for Monty and also discounted his Ryder Cup record, where he never lost in eight singles matches, as being enough to merit his inclusion.

Montgomerie is the fourth player in the last four years to be inducted into the Hall of Fame without having won a major. The others were Jumbo Ozaki, Jock Hutchison and Christy O'Connor Sr. A fifth would be Peter Alliss, who won 23 times on the European Tour, though he was recognized more for his work with the BBC.

"I vote on the basis of who’s worthy and there’s always Majors in it for me," Jacklin told the Florida Times-Union.

"He won’t be remembered for the Ryder Cup when he’s dead and buried. It will just be something that happened in a Ryder Cup. I understand he has a fantastic record and is a great player but he should have won Majors."

And Jacklin wasn’t alone in his reasoning. Bernard Langer questioned why Mark O'Meara, who won two Majors, was omitted when Montgomerie was included.

"I don’t understand why Mark O’Meara isn’t in the Hall of Fame," Langer said.

"I voted for him the last two or three years. He has the better record than either of those two. I’m not saying Couples or Monty shouldn’t be in, but I’m saying Mark O’Meara should be in."

Four-time Major winner Raymond Floyd was even harsher in his summation: "I’ll just say that you should have at least two Majors (before being allowed in)," he said.

"It takes integrity away from the term ‘Hall of Fame.’ I’m very upset at the Hall of Fame."

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