Cam claims Greg Norman medal – Golf Australia Magazine
Also victorious in 2020, Smith claimed Australian golf’s highest honour ahead of a stellar field, including the 2021 winner and 2022 Women’s US Open champion, Minjee Lee.
The PGA Awards also celebrates the extensive contribution of PGA Professionals who have achieved great success in their own endeavours throughout the industry, with Smith’s coach and Director of Coaching at Queensland’s Pelican Waters Golf Club, Grant Field, named PGA National Coach of the Year – High Performance, for the second year in a row.
Joining him, Joe Janison from The Brisbane Golf Club was awarded PGA National Club Professional of the Year for his outstanding service to the club and its members, while Brookwater Golf and Country Club’s John Collins won PGA National Coach of the Year – Game Development as he continues to grow engagement right throughout Queensland.
Des Shearer of Bunbury Golf Club was named PGA National Management Professional of the Year for his continued commitment to innovation, Queensland’s Mitchell Smith was named PGA Associate of the Year, while Duc Pham who is based in Vietnam, was awarded the inaugural PGA of Australia International Member of the Year.
A chance to celebrate Australian golf’s highest achievers both on and off the golf course, the PGA Awards also serves as the official launch of the 2022 Fortinet Australian PGA Championship, to be played at Royal Queensland Golf Club, starting on Thursday.
The Greg Norman Medal – Australian golf’s most prestigious award – is presented to Australia’s best male or female Tour Professional on the international stage. The winner is determined based on annual success across all professional tours.
Smith’s receipt of the Greg Norman Medal follows a career-best season. Headlined by a maiden Major victory at the 150th Open Championship, Smith climbed as high as No.2 in the world rankings in 2022.
His strong string of performances also broke new ground in golf, as Smith shot a PGA Tour record of 34-under par to start the year with a win at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii. Making the most of his good form, he followed it up with victory at The Players Championship in March.
PGA of Australia CEO, Gavin Kirkman was pleased to celebrate Smith, recognising that his achievements formed part of a particularly successful year for Australian golf.
“We’re very proud of Cam as someone who is home-grown, authentic and incredibly skilful at what he does,” Kirkman said.
“It must have been a really difficult decision for this medal in 2022 because we also had Minjee Lee winning the US Women’s Open – the biggest tournament in women’s golf. But Cam’s year was absolutely incredible.
“It’s fair to say that by performing on the biggest stages in world golf, he and other players like Minjee Lee, have given golf in this country an incredible shot in the arm. Golf Australia’s participation program MyGolf has experienced record numbers thanks to the performances of Cam and Minjee, and we’re also seeing golf continue to boom in lessons, membership and how many people are hitting golf balls around the country.”
The judges for the Greg Norman Medal were PGA of Australia Chair Rodger Davis, WPGA Tour Life-Member Karrie Webb, WPGA Tour President Julia Boland, PGA Life Member Peter O’Malley and PGA Board member Ian Baker-Finch.
Judging of the Greg Norman Medal is based on a combination of objective and subjective criterion, with the panel taking many factors into consideration, including results and rankings.
There were more winners on the night with Vic Open winner Dimitrios Papadatos honoured after a breakthrough season, named ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia Player of the Year. Joining him in the Tour category, was Hannah Green who was awarded the Margie Masters Player of the Year following two fantastic wins at the Vic Open and TPS Murray River as the first women to win a mixed-gender event on a major tour. Evergreen Queenslander, Andre Stolz, claimed the Sparms Legends Tour Player of the Year.