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Donnelly's Delight in Honouring Sandy at Scottish Golf Awards

30th January 2013
Donnelly's Delight in Honouring Sandy at Scottish Golf Awards

Dougie Donnelly, among Scotland's most renowned broadcasters, says he is “thrilled” to be hosting the 2013 Scottish Golf Awards on the night one of his biggest heroes, Sandy Lyle, is honoured.

The countdown is well and truly on for the curtain raiser to the 2013 golfing season when Lyle will be joined by a clutch of other award winners from all levels of the game on stage at the Hilton Glasgow on Friday 1 March.

The glittering occasion, a fundraiser for the development of junior golf in Scotland, is to culminate with Lyle's richly-deserved Lifetime Achievement Award – appropriately coming 25 years after the Scot became the first Briton to win the US Masters at Augusta.

Donnelly will also reflect on the wonderful career enjoyed by Lyle, who won the first of his two Major titles at the 1985 Open at Royal St George's and secured 18 European Tour victories.

Such is Lyle's standing, the 54-year-old was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame last May and, just days ago, was considered for captaincy of the European Ryder Cup team at Gleneagles in 2014 only for Paul McGinley to be appointed the first Irish skipper.

During his own distinguished broadcasting days, Donnelly has witnessed Lyle's career first hand and is now relishing the prospect of introducing his Lifetime Achievement Award in front of the Scottish golfing public.

“I'm absolutely thrilled Sandy is to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Scottish Golf Awards on 1 March, it's a well-deserved accolade,” he said. “For Sandy to get into the World Golf Hall of Fame last year and now be recognised in his native country is fantastic.

“It will mean a huge amount for Sandy as he is a very, very proud Scot. I'm thrilled I'll be there to introduce his award, as he is a lovely guy and a hero of mine, as he is for so many Scots.”

Donnelly recalls attending his first Masters in 1989, just 12 months after Lyle's heroics when he made birdie from a fairway bunker on the 18th to edge out Marc Calcavecchia for the Green Jacket.

“One of the first things I did when I went to Augusta was to go and look at the bunker at 18 to see how he played the shot with his famous 7-iron,” remembers Dougie, fondly. “I still think one of the greatest compliments that any golfer has ever been paid was Seve's famous line, ‘If everyone in the world was playing their best, Sandy would win and I'd come second.'

“That is a phenomenal quote and just highlights how highly-rated Sandy was. Indeed, if you talk to any of his contemporaries, they say Sandy was as good as anyone at his peak, just a phenomenal golfer.

“Maybe because of Sandy's personality, being this lovely, gentle, laid-back, big kind of guy, he hasn't quite got the recognition that he should have got. It's an injustice he has never been European Ryder Cup captain, for example.”

Tickets are selling fast for the 2013 Scottish Golf Awards, but golf fans still have time to book their seats for the event, with a table of 10 costing ? 800 or individual tickets priced at ? 85. The superb package includes a whisky and champagne reception, 3-course meal with wine and fantastic prizes to be won in the auction and raffle. Guests will also have the opportunity to have their photographs taken with a glittering array of golf's most iconic trophies – including the Ryder Cup and the Claret Jug.

To purchase tickets, please call the Scottish Golf Union on 01334 466477 or visit www.scottishgolf.org to buy on-line via the SGU Shop.

 







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