Five-time Open champion Peter Thomson dies aged 88

Golf
Peter Thomson after winning the Open for the fifth time in 1965
Peter Thomson after winning the Open for the fifth time in 1965

Australia's five-time Open Championship winner Peter Thomson has died aged 88.

The first Australian to win the major died at his home in Melbourne at 9am on Wednesday (Midnight BST Tuesday), his family told PGA Australia (PGAA).

Thomson had suffered from Parkinson's disease for more than four years, the body said.

Fellow star of Australian golf Karrie Webb said he was an "Aussie legend and true gentleman of the game".

Aged 24, Thomson became one of the youngest winners of the British Open Championship with a victory at Royal Birkdale in 1954.

He went on to win the Claret Jug a further four times over the next decade, a record only matched by the US's Tom Watson and Scotsman James Braid in the 20th century.

All-time record holder Harry Vardon won only one more British Open, with six victories between 1896 and 1914.

Born Vale Peter Thomson on August 23 1929 in Brunswick, Victoria, he began playing professionally at 19 and won his first open in New Zealand in 1950, a competition he would win on a further eight occasions.

His British Open victories in 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958 and 1965 were among 89 professional tournament wins during his career.

Thomson played only a few seasons in the US, which saw one victory at the 1956 Texas Open.

Made Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for his service to golf in 1979, in 2001 he became an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).

He was awarded an honorary degree from St Andrews University in 2005 alongside British stars Peter Alliss and Nick Faldo.

Thomson served as president of the PGAA for 32 years, during which time he also helped design and build courses in Australia and around the world.

He is survived by his wife Mary, son Andrew and daughters Deirdre Baker, Pan Prendergast and Fiona Stanway, his 11 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Most Read

Our best bets for the latest round of Europa League games1

Europa League betting preview

The Europa League kicks off on Thursday with Chelsea and Arsenal fancied for success. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

We're backing a Bundesliga side for success in the Europa League this season2

Europa League outright preview

Arsenal and Chelsea may find themselves as favourites for Europa League glory this season, but Tom Carnduff is looking elsewhere.

Trainer Aidan O'Brien3

€1.6m son of Frankel wins on debut

The €1.6million son of Frankel, Old Glory, made a promising start to his career by winning on debut at Naas on Wednesday night.

Sporting Life Price Boost: Arsenal, Leipzig and Rosenborg feature4

Sporting Life Price Boost

Sky Bet have enhanced the odds of a Europa League treble on Thursday's football, exclusively for Sporting Life readers.

Sporting Life's Premier League preview package5

Saturday's Premier League tips

Get your Saturday Premier League coupon sorted with our previews, Super 6 predictions and best bets for all six of the 3pm kick-offs.

Most Read

Our best bets for the latest round of Europa League games1

Europa League betting preview

The Europa League kicks off on Thursday with Chelsea and Arsenal fancied for success. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

We're backing a Bundesliga side for success in the Europa League this season2

Europa League outright preview

Arsenal and Chelsea may find themselves as favourites for Europa League glory this season, but Tom Carnduff is looking elsewhere.

Trainer Aidan O'Brien3

€1.6m son of Frankel wins on debut

The €1.6million son of Frankel, Old Glory, made a promising start to his career by winning on debut at Naas on Wednesday night.

Sporting Life Price Boost: Arsenal, Leipzig and Rosenborg feature4

Sporting Life Price Boost

Sky Bet have enhanced the odds of a Europa League treble on Thursday's football, exclusively for Sporting Life readers.

Sporting Life's Premier League preview package5

Saturday's Premier League tips

Get your Saturday Premier League coupon sorted with our previews, Super 6 predictions and best bets for all six of the 3pm kick-offs.

Racing Tips

Check out Ben Linfoot's latest Value Bet selections

Value Bet: Royal procession

Ben Linfoot seeks out the value in the William Hill Ayr Bronze Cup Handicap on Friday with an unexposed sprinter from Newmarket taken to land the spoils.

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action

Wednesday's racing preview

The Owen Burrows-trained Wadilsafa is the standout selection at Sandown, according to Nick Robson. He has a tip for every race.

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action

Thursday racing preview

Nick Grant picks out the best bets for Thursday and he has a tip for every race in the UK and Ireland.

Next Race Off
17:45 Chelmsford City
2
(1)
Prince of Rome
J: S W Kelly
1
(8)
Deputise
J: R Kingscote

Football Tips

Our best bets for the latest round of Europa League games

Europa League betting preview

The Europa League kicks off on Thursday with Chelsea and Arsenal fancied for success. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

We're backing a Bundesliga side for success in the Europa League this season

Europa League outright preview

Arsenal and Chelsea may find themselves as favourites for Europa League glory this season, but Tom Carnduff is looking elsewhere.

Our best bets for Wigan v Bristol City

Powell set to star for Latics

The Sky Bet Championship gets going with Wigan's televised encounter with Bristol City. Tom Carnduff has a look at the betting.