Golfing is a favorite pastime for many people. The sport dates back to the 17th century with the place of origin being question, although, Scotland has the closest claim to its origin. It is the sport that requires you to hit a small white ball with a club, in the fewest strokes as possible, into a cup that is situated, and set into shortly cropped grass, called a green. The cups follow a fairway in consecutive order from 1 to 18 with the typical course running more than 6,000 feet long. It is a difficult game and requires patience and a lot of skill, but there are those who have mastered the game, and to prove their skill, they enter into competitions. Those who have exceptional skill will try to go pro. Like with most sports, there is a pro golfing league and when the pros play, they play for big bucks, with many of the competitions paying out over $500,000, however, the coveted trophy and win, is the U.S. Open. If you can claim that title, you take home over $1 million dollars. If you have ever wondered who the richest players were in the sport, keep reading to find out who the 20 richest golfers of all-time are.
20. David Toms - $35 million
David Toms was born in 1987 in Monroe, Louisiana and is a pro golfer who plays on the PGA tour. He has had a long career in the sport that started when he was young, He won the Boy's event at the 1984 Junior World Golf Championships and after graduating high school, he went on to Louisiana State University where he was on the golf team. In his professional career, Toms has won many events, including 13 events on the PGA tour and was in the top 10 of the Official World Ranking for an impressive 175 weeks during the years 2001-2006. He also ranked fifth during the 2002-2003 season. Outside of the PGA, Toms has had a total of 17 wins in his career and has a net worth of $35 million dollars.
19. Sergio Garcia - $40 million
Sergio Garcia is a Spanish pro golfer who was born in 1980 and is most notably recognized for his wins in the 2008 Players Championship and the 2017 Masters Tournament. Garcia spent the majority of his professional golfing career in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Ranking, this includes 300 weeks in the top 10 between the years of 2000 and 2009. And overall, he spent over 400 weeks in the top 10. He has also won 30 international tournaments as a pro golfer. He has participated in the Ryder Cup, where he competed in eight of the nine matches. He is one of the top PGA golfers of all-time and has a net worth of $40 million dollars.
18. Padraig Harrington - $40 million
Padraig Harrington was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1971 and plays on the PGA tour. He has won many tournaments and has spent over 300 weeks in the top-10 of the Official World Golf Ranking. His career reached its high in July of 2008 when he won three major championships; The Open Championship in both 2007 and 2008, followed by the PGA Championship in 2008. He won his first PGA Tour money event when he defeated Vijay Singh and Joe Ogilvie in a sudden-death playoff in 2005. He began having difficulties getting a win in 2013 and 2014, but that changed when in December of 2014 he won the Bank BRI Indonesia Open on the Asian Tour. It was his first win in 4 years. He then had another win in March of 2015 when he took the title on the European PGA Tour at the Honda Classic, his first PGA win in 7 years. He has a net worth of $40 million dollars.
17. Luke Donald - $40 million
Born in 1977, the English pro golfer Luke Donald has been the World Number One and plays mainly for the US based PGA Tour, but is a member of the European Tour as well. One of his best years was in 2011 which is the year he won an outstanding number of tournaments and awards. Be broke a record by being the first golfer to win the PGA Tour money list as well as the European Race to Dubai, both money lists on the PGA tour. He was named Player of the Year that year, and became the number one golfer in the Official World Golf Ranking, which he held for 40 weeks. Luke Donald has a net worth of $40 million.
16. Lee Westwood - $42 million
Born in April of 1973, Lee Westwood is an English pro golfer who has been recognized for his consistency with the game. He has won tournaments on five continents, which is rare. Only a few golfers have accomplished this. He has won in Europe, North America, Asia, Africa, and Australia. He was named player of the year in multiple seasons; 1998, 2000 and 2009. He is frequently referred to as one of the best golfers who has not won a major championship. For the last ten Ryder Cups, Westwood has represented Europe, but he became the World Number One Golfer in 2010 and took over Tiger Wood's place for the title. He has a net worth of $42 million dollars and is one of the richest pro golfers of all-time.
15. Lee Trevino - $45 million
Lee Trevino was born in 1939 and is a retired pro golfer with the PGA. His accomplishments in the sport span over his many year career and had so many titles and awards that he was named the 14th best golfer of all-time by The Golf Digest. Trevino played in the Ryder Cup six different times, in 1969, '71, '73, '75, '79, and '81. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1981 and won the Vardon Trophy for scoring the lowest average five different times, spanning from 1970-1980. Trevino was so well recognized in his era that he had a major street named for him in El Paso, TX. He has co-authored his autobiography, titled, They Call Me Super Mex. He has earned a net worth, through the years, of $45 million dollars and is one of the wealthiest golfers.
14. Annika Sorenstam - $47 million
Annika Sorenstam is a Swedish born, retired pro golfer who was born in 1970 and is recognized as one of the most successful female golfers in the history of the sport. She had won 90 international tournaments before she stepped away from the sport and has the most wins to her name of any female golfer. She has also won 72 official LPGA tournaments. This includes 10 majors as well as 18 other international tournaments. She held a dual citizenship until 2006, for the US and Sweden. Sorenstam is also the winner of the Player of the Year awards, eight times, which is a record in itself. She has a net worth of $44 million dollars and is one of the wealthiest pro golfers of both male or female.
13. Adam Scott - $48 million
Born in July of 1980, Australian born Adam Scott is a PGA golfer who plays on the tour. He was ranked as the World No. 1 golfer from the middle of May to August in 2015 and has won 29 pro tournaments internationally. His biggest win to-date was the Masters Tournament in 2013. It was his first major championship; it was also the first Masters to be won by an Australian. He has other significant wins, including the 2004 Players Championship, the 2011 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, the 2016 WGC-Cadillac Championship and was runner-up in the 2012 Open Championship. He is regarded as a powerhouse in golf and has a net worth of $48 million.
12. Jim Furyk - $50 million
The American pro golfer, Jim Furyk, plays on the PGA tour. He was the champion of the FedEx Cup in 2010 and the PGA Player of the Year, as well. He has one major championship to his name, the 2003 U.S. Open and he holds the pro golf record for the lowest score in PGA Tour history, which is 58, which he happened to shoot during the last round of the Travelers Championship in 2016. Furyk reached his career high in 2006, when he ranked second in the Official World Golf Ranking. In total, he ranked in the top-10 for over 430 weeks between the years of 1999 to 2015. Jim Furyk is one of the best pro golfers, and one of the richest of all-time with a $50 million dollar net worth.
11. Nick Faldo - $60 million
Nick Faldo, born, Sir Nicholas Alexander Faldo, was born in July of 1957 and is an English pro golfer who plays on the European Tour. Today, he primarily sits as a golf analyst but was an incredible and top player in his era. He was ranked No. 1 on the Official World Golf Ranking for a total of 97 weeks and his professional career includes 30 victories on the European Tour. Six of his wins were major championships and three, Open Championships. In 2006, Faldo became the lead golf analysis for CBS Sports and in 2012 he joined on with BBC Sport to do team coverage for the Open Championship. His golf career and all of his ventures since his retirement, together, have earned him a $60 million dollar net worth.
10. Rory McIlroy - $65 million
Rory McIlroy is a Northern Ireland pro golfer who was born in May of 1989 and is a member of both the European and PGA Tours. He had won 3 majors by the time he was 25 years old. He was also World No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking and held that position for 95 weeks. Overall, McIlroy has won four majors and the 2011 US Open. He finished that tournament with a record of the lowest score under par (-16) and followed that up the following year by nabbing a tournament record by finishing the 2012 PGA Championship with the largest victory margin by 8 strokes. He is an impressive golfer and has earned a net worth of $65 million in his career.
9. Vijay Singh - $75 million
Vijay Singh is a Fijian pro golfer who was born in 1963 and has had a remarkable golfing career with the PGA. He is the PGA Champion of 1998 and 2004 and was the leading PGA Tour Money winner for three years; 2003, 2004, and 2008. He also claimed the win in the FedEx Cup in 2008 and was the Number 1 Rank in the Official World Golf Ranking for 32 weeks back in 2004 and 2005. He is often remembered as the golfer with the meticulous preparation, and was often found at the range well before an event and staying after for hours to work on his game. He was elected into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2005 and has earned a net worth of $75 million dollars throughout his career.
8. Ernie Els - $80 million
Theodore Ernest Els was born in South Africa in 1969 and is a pro golfer who is known as "The Big Easy" due to his dominating physical stature of 6 feet and 3 inches tall. He also has a fluid golf swing that adds to his nickname. He has had an impressive career, with 71 victories, four of which were major championships: the US Open, Oakmont, Congressional, and The Open Championship. He is one of only six golfers to win the U.S. Open and the The Open Championship, twice. Other accomplishments include, holding the number 1 spot in the Official World Golf Ranking, as well as he now holds a spot in the World Golf Hall of Fame, since 2010. Els has earned a net worth of $80 million during his career.
7. Fred Couples - $105 million
Born in 1959, Frederick Steven Couples is an American pro golfer who played for the PGA Tour as well as the PGA Tour Champions. He is a previous, World No. 1 and has successfully taken home 64 wins in professional tournaments. Couples is most notably recognized for his 1992 Masters Tournament win and the 1984 a nd 1996 Players Championship. In 2011, Couples played a maiden senior major, the Senior Players Championship and is now in the World Golf Hall of Fame, since being inducted in 2013. He has a net worth of $105 million, making him one of the wealthiest pro golfers in the game's history.
6. Phil Mickelson - $180 million
Phil Mickelson is a PGA pro golfer who was nicknamed, Lefty, being one of few left-hand players. His swing is that of a lefty, although he is naturally right-handed. He was born in 1970 and has a total win of 42 events in his career, including five major championships; three Masters titles, a PGA Championship and an Open Championship. He only one of 16 players in the history of the PGA to have won at least 3 of the four majors and has won every Major except the U.S. Open, however, he has finished as runner up, an incredible, six times. Mickelson is one of the most recognized names in the sport and has spent over 700 weeks in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Ranking. Mickelson has a net worth of $180 million dollars, one of the richest pro golfers of all-time.
5. Gary Player - $200 million
With a net worth of $200 million dollars, Gary Player is not only one of the richest pro golfers, but he is in the top five. He was born in 1935 and retired with an incredible legacy in the sport. He accumulated a total of nine major championships while playing professionally. He has also won three Senior British Open Championships on the European Senior Tour since leaving the Majors. He won the U.S. Open in 1965 at the age of 29 and was then recognized as the only non-American to have won all four majors, which is known as a Grand Slam. in six decades, Player is accredited to winning 165 tournaments on six different continents and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1974.
4. Jack Nicklaus - $280 million
Jack Nicklaus is nicknamed The Golden Bear. He is an American pro golfer and was born in 1940. Since the beginning of his career, Nicklaus has been impressing golfers, both beginners and pro, with his incredible talent. He has 18 career Major championship wins to his name, which is what he focused on, however, he did play a select few PGA Tour events and finished those with 73 victories, making him third on the all-time list, just behind Sam Snead with 82 victories and Tiger Woods, with 79. He was 21 years of age when he turned pro and his very first professional win came at age 26. He has an impressive net worth of $280 million dollars and is the 4th wealthiest pro golfer of all-time.
3. Greg Norman - $300 million
The Australian pro golfer who always looked the part, Greg Norman was very much recognized for his outback look on the fairway. Norman was born in 1955 and is not only a pro golfer, but an entrepreneur and big philanthropist. He was the world's Number 1 Official World Golf Rankings golfer in the 1980's - 1990's. He has 91 international tournament wins, which includes 20 PGA Tour tournament wins and two Majors. Norman was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2001 and is often referred to as "The Great White Shark," or "The Shark," due to his aggressive style of play. He has earned a net worth over the years, of $300 million and is one of the most popular, and the richest golfers.
2. Tiger Woods - $600 million
If you don't know the name, Tiger Woods, you might be really out of touch. He is one of the most popular names ever, in golf and out. Tiger Woods had a natural ability for the sport starting at a very young age, and with his father's encouragement and training, he mastered the game and turned pro at the age of 20. He has been one of the highest paid athletes, ever, for years and he has some pretty impressive stats. He won his first major at the 1997 Masters and was a dominant player from August 1999 to September of 2004. He was the top-ranked men's golfer in the world for 281 weeks between June 2005 and October 2010. Woods has set numerous golfing records and was the World Number 1 golfer for the most number of weeks. He was also awarded the PGA Player of the Year eleven times and has the second highest net worth of $600 million dollars.
1. Arnold Palmer - $675 million
Arnold Palmer was born in 1929 and is typically regarded as the greatest golfer to have ever lived. He was nicknamed, The King and not only played the game, but he helped pioneer some of the most important milestones in the PGA's history. He is the first superstar of the sport's television age when the game was introduced to TV in the 1950's. He has won countless events on the PGA Tour as well as the PGA Tour Champions. His career more than 60 years and during that time, Palmer took home 62 PGA Tour titles as well as seven major titles in just over six years. Palmer was also given the PGA Tour Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998 and was one of the 13 original players to be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. Palmer died in September of 2016 and had a net worth of $675 million. He is not only revered for his golfing achievements through the years, but he is the all-time, richest pro golfer.
Written by Maria McCutchen
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