Key Scottish players

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Golf in Scotland Brochure 2015
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  • Golfer Carly Booth lines up for a putt
    Carly Booth
  • Golfer Paul Lawrie stands with Castle Stuart Golf Links General Manager, Stuart McColm © Stewart Grant
    Paul Lawrie and Castle Stuart Golf Links General Manager, Stuart McColm © Stewart Grant
  • Golfer Sam Torrance takes a break from a game at the Castle Course in St Andrews, Fife
    Sam Torrance plays a round of golf at the Castle Course in St Andrews, Fife

Scottish golfers have long played an important role on the international golfing stage. They include Ryder Cup winning captains and winners of major golf tournaments including the Open. We've listed six of the best below.

Carly Booth

Born in 1992 in Comrie, Perthshire, golf poster girl Carly Booth is known for being the youngest ever Scot to qualify for the Ladies European Tour in 2009 and also for becoming the youngest ladies' club champion in Britain at the age of 11.

Aged 12, she played with Sandy Lyle at the British Masters Pro-Am and two years later appeared in her first professional event, the Ladies Scottish Open where she finished 13th. Her professional debut came at the Ladies European Tour at the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco. Booth achieved her first wins in 2012, first with the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open in May followed a month later by the Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open.

Stephen Gallacher

Born in Dechmont, West Lothian, Stephen Gallacher turned pro in 1995 and first played on the European Tour the following year. He went on to win the 2004 Dunhill Links Championship in St Andrews, Fife, finishing the year ranked 15th on the Order of Merit.

He has since won the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in both 2013 and 2014, becoming the first golfer to ever successfully defend the title, and was also picked by Paul McGinley as one of three wild-cards for the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.

In 2012 Gallacher set up the Stephen Gallacher Foundation, an organisation aiming to encourage junior golfers in the Lothians and the Scottish Borders, with competitions for all ages throughout the year.

Paul Lawrie

Born on in Aberdeen in 1969, Paul Lawrie OBE is best known for winning the Open Championship at Carnoustie in 1999. During this event, he came back from the largest third round deficit ever faced by a major championship winner; going into the final day trailing leader Van de Velde by 10 shots.

Two years after his spectacular win, The Paul Lawrie Foundation (PLF) was set up with the mission to get as many young people playing golf as possible. Since its launch in March 2001 it has steadily become one of the leading programmes in Scotland for under-18s, giving them the opportunity to try golf and encouraging them to develop their sporting potential.

Lawrie has also been a member of the European Ryder Cup team twice, once in 1999 and again in 2012 when Europe defeated the US.

Sandy Lyle

Born Alexander Walter Barr Lyle in 1958, Sandy Lyle MBE was one of Scotland’s top golfers during the 1980s winning two major championships during his career. Hailing from Shrewsbury, England, Lyle is of Scottish parentage and when he turned professional at the age of nineteen he made the decision to represent Scotland.

A victory at the 1978 Nigerian Open marked his first professional win before going on to win 18 European Tour titles in 1979. Lyle’s winning streak continued with wins in major tournaments including the 1985 British Open Championship and the 1988 Masters Tournament and was a member of five European Ryder Cup teams between 1979 and 1987. He spent 167 weeks in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings from 1986 to 1989. After becoming the first British winner of Masters, Lyle put haggis on the menu at the Champions Dinner the following year.

His lustrous career was capped off with an induction in to the World Golf Hall of Fame in May 2012.

Catriona Matthew

Catriona Matthew MBE was born in Edinburgh in 1969 and grew up in North Berwick, East Lothian. Matthew mainly plays in the US-based LPGA Tour and her professional career started in 1994 when she qualified for her first LPGA Tour and then qualified for the Ladies European Tour a year later.

Her professional wins include the RICOH Women's British Open in 2009 when she became the first Scot to win the major championship. Matthew then went on to win the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open in 2011 and 2013, with a win at the Ladies Irish Open in-between.

Colin Montgomerie

Colin Mongomerie OBE was born in Glasgow in 1963. He has become one of Scotland's sporting heroes, dominating competitions at home and abroad for many years. Montgomerie, or Monty as he is more affectionately known, has won a record eight European Tour Order of Merit titles, including a streak of seven consecutive wins from 1993 to 1999. A total of 31 European Tour wins placed him fourth on the all time list of golfers with most European Tour victories and saw him take the most wins achieved by any British player.

Montgomerie consistently ranked amongst the world's best golfers, moving in to the top 10 of the world rankings in 1994. His highest ranking was number two. Montgomerie is considered by many as being one of the greatest Ryder Cup players of all time. He has been a member of the European team on eight occasions and has never lost in a singles match. In 2013 Montgomerie was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame.

Sam Torrance

Born in Largs, North Ayrshire, in 1953, Sam Torrance OBE began his remarkable golfing career at 16 when he began to play the sport professionally.  During a career spanning 40 years, he has amassed 44 tournament wins including 21 victories on the European Tour and wins in the European Senior Tour Order of Merit in 2005, 2006 and 2009.

Torrance was a member of the European Ryder Cup team on eight consecutive occasions between 1981 to 1995. He sunk the winning putt at the Belfry in 1985, denying the American team a win for the first time in 28 years, and was also part of the team which took the first ever win for Europe on American soil in 1987.

He also famously captained the winning European Ryder Cup team in 2002 and was Vice Captain of Team Europe for The 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles. Torrance continues to play in tournaments but also designs golf courses and has commentated during many major golf events over the last decade.

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