Faldo knighted

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Nick Faldo has been knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Faldo becomes Sir Nick following an outstanding career in which he won six Major Championships – three Opens and three Masters – and became the all-time record points scorer in the history of The Ryder Cup with 25 points from 11 appearances for Europe against the United States.

George O’Grady, the Chief Executive of The European Tour, said: “Nick thoroughly deserves this award and on behalf of the Board of Directors and everyone at The European Tour I congratulate him. Judged by his record in Major Championships alone he is unquestionably the finest English golfer in the modern era and he is recognised as one of the greatest golfers in the history of the game for his unparalleled achievements during an illustrious career.”

Nicholas Alexander Faldo, who was appointed an MBE in 1998, turned professional in 1976 and he won 30 tournaments on The European Tour International Schedule and in all 39 tournaments worldwide.

The 51-year-old from Welwyn Garden City won The Open Championship in 1987 (Muirfield), 1990 (St Andrews) and 1992 (Muirfield) and the Masters Tournament at Augusta National in 1989, 1990 and 1996. He was ranked Number One on the Official World Golf Ranking for a total of 98 weeks.

Faldo, who was the European Captain for The 2008 Ryder Cup, played 46 matches – winning 23 times with four halves - in the biennial encounter during 11 consecutive appearances between 1977 and 1997.

In 1996 he launched the Faldo Series to encourage young golfers both male and female. Nick Dougherty and Oliver Fisher were both back to back winners of the Faldo Series and Rory McIlroy is the latest graduate to win on The European Tour International Schedule.

Faldo, 51, said he felt "humbled" but "delighted" after being awarded a knighthood. He added: "I was delighted to hear the news that I will be receiving a knighthood and am more than a little bit humbled to have been afforded this great honour.

"It has come as a real surprise and the reaction from my children, family and friends has made this a very special moment for me.

"Golf is in so many ways a very British pastime, and Britain the true home of the sport. In recent times, this nation has produced some of the finest golfers of any generation - players like Tony Jacklin, Ian Woosnam and Sandy Lyle - multiple Major-winning sportsmen that have represented this nation at the very highest level and not been found wanting.

"I believe I join Sir Henry Cotton as the only other professional British golfer to receive a knighthood so to stand alongside such esteemed company is incredible."

Faldo's knighthood has been met with tributes from golfing broadcasters, players and officials in the United States.

News of the 51 year old's honour was greeted warmly in the USA, where Faldo works as a golf analyst.

"Nick is the pre-eminent English golfer of the modern era," World Number Two Phil Mickelson said.

"His skill in controlling the golf ball is legendary. No one was tougher coming down the stretch of a Major Championship."

"How does it get any bigger than this?" Co-commentator Jim Nantz added.

"Sir Nick? I can hardly wait to introduce him on the air that way. Of course we always considered Nick to be royalty over here stateside. I'm just happy the Queen saw fit to finally confirm."