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Retief Goosen is making his third PGA Grand Slam of Golf appearance. (Photo: Getty Images)

Retief Goosen PGA Grand Slam of Golf Profile

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By Bob Denney, The PGA of America

He has won golf championships in every corner of the world; made pressure putts on greens that resemble linoleum while holding membership on three PGA Tours -- in the United States, Europe and South Africa.

Before Retief Goosen turned professional in 1990, he was awarded South Africa's prestigious Springbok Colours in recognition of his 30 amateur victories and contributions to amateur golf in his homeland.

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Did you know that Goosen, the unflappable one, also is on an underpublicized roll? Since 1995, he has not gone a season without a victory on one of the world's major tours? Though winless thus far in 2008, Goosen is poised to make an impact as he visits Mid Ocean Club in Bermuda for his third appearance in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.

Goosen owns memorable U.S. Open triumphs on rugged major championship venues, including in 2001 at Southern hills Country Club, winning an 18-hole playoff against Mark Brooks a day after three-putting the 72nd hole. in 2004, he one-putted 32 times, including 11 in the final round, at rock-hard Shinnecock Hills to become the 21st player to win multiple U.S. Opens. As a result, he firmly cemented his position in both world and South Africa sports lore.

This season, Goosen has made 13 of 18 cuts on the PGA Tour, including tying for 17th in the Masters, sharing 14th in the U.S. Open, tying for 32nd in the Open Championship and sharing 24th in the PGA Championship.

Off the course, we also are discovering more about the eclectic tastes of the 39-year-old Goosen.

He is a patron for SADGA (South Africa Disabled Golf Association) and MAD (Make a Difference) charity, a Cape Town-based organization founded in 2003 with the main focus of providing educational opportunities for talented, less fortunate children.

Introduced to golf at age 11 by his father, a 10-handicap player, Goosen overcame a much-publicized near tragedy when he was struck by lightning at age 17.

He recovered from recurring health problems to regain the form that made him one of the brightest professional prospects from a generation of South African youths that included Ernie Els.

Goosen became the first non-European to win the Volvo Order of Merit since Greg norman in 1982 and the first South African to win the European Tour's Harry Vardon Trophy since Dale Hayes in 1975.

A year later, Goosen was made an honorary member of The European Tour after retaining the Order of Merit following a season-long duel with Ireland's Padraig Harrington. The Goosen business portfolio also includes his love for designing courses and fine wine.

"Designing golf courses is a lot of fun," says Goosen on his web site, where he lists designs in South Africa and China. "It gives me a big thrill seeing them develop and grow from nothing. I am very passionate about design and draw from my Tour experience of playing on the world's greatest courses, from the links at St. Andrews to Augusta and Dubai.

"I'd like to leave some sort of mark behind. It would be good to think that people knew straight away this was a Retief Goosen course."

Goosen also boasts a brand of wine bearing the "Goose" silhouette, all of which is nurtured in a vineyard 2,500 feet above sea level in the Upper Langloof Valley in the Garden Route of South Africa.

The Goose Expression 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz earned the 2008 Bronze medal by the decanter World Wine Award.

It's nice to know something more about the guy with the poker face who wields a putter like it is a saber and whose reputation for clutch performances is the envy of his peers.

The Retief Goosen File
PGA Grand Slam of Golf Appearances:2001 (3), 2004 (3), 2008
Major Championship Wins:U.S. Open 2001, 2004
Worldwide Victories:34
Birthdate:February 3, 1969
Birthplace:Pietersburg, South Africa
Residences:Pietersburg, South Africa; South Ascot, London, England; Orlando, Fla.
Family:Wife, Tracy; children, Leo (2003), Ella Ann (2004)
Special Interests:Water skiing, all sports
Turned Professional:1990

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