Two-time major champion Sandy Lyle and British commentator Peter Alliss will be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame next year after being selected Thursday for the Class of 2012.
Lyle was elected through the international ballot after winning 29 tournaments worldwide, including the 1985 British Open and the 1988 Masters, where he became the first British winner at Augusta National.
“To be placed in the company of the greatest names in our game is very special,” the 53-year-old Scotsman said.
Alliss commentated on both of Lyle’s major victories after beginning his career behind the microphone for the BBC in 1961. He had previously won 23 tournaments as a player and was selected for all but one of Britain and Ireland’s Ryder Cup teams from 1953-69.
“This is all very unexpected,” said the 80-year-old Alliss, who has also written more than 20 golf books and helped in the design of more than 50 courses. “I am delighted, surprised, humbled and honored to be thought of in this way and to be given a place in the World Golf Hall of Fame, particularly as it is chosen by people all around the world.”
They will be inducted along with writer Dan Jenkins and players Phil Mickelson and Hollis Stacy at a ceremony at World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida, in May.
European Tour Chief Executive George O’Grady described the selections of Lyle and Alliss as a “special day” for the tour.
“Peter followed a highly acclaimed playing career by becoming a hugely admired and wonderfully entertaining commentator, while Sandy played a pivotal role in raising the image and popularity of British and European golf with his exceptional winning performances in the 1985 Open Championship and the 1988 Masters,” O’Grady said.
Lyle, who currently plays on the European Senior Tour, was elected ahead of Colin Montgomerie of Scotland, Ian Woosnam of Wales and Retief Goosen of South Africa in the international voting.