Golfers occasionally turn up on tour going only by their initials rather than their full names. But just what are the names behind the initials...
For various reasons, golfers occasionally turn up on tour going only by their initials rather than their full names. Sometimes it’s for practical pronunciation reasons with overseas players, other times it’s simply personal preference or childhood legacy. Here we reveal 10 of golf’s names behind the initials
Taiwanese Tze-chung Chen played on the PGA Tour for 10 years, finishing 2nd twice, most notably in the 1985 US Open when an infamous final-round double hit cost him the chance to become Asia’s first Major champion. Most forget that he also scored the first albatross in US Open history during that same tournament.
The 2008 Bob Hope winner’s real names are Donald and Roland, which doesn’t really explain the J…
The monumental-hitting three-time tour winner’s real names are John Bradley but he prefers JB. Apparently there was a famous porn star in the States called John Holmes…
One of Korea’s finest ever players turned to initials after first-tee announcers regularly got hopelessly tongue-tied trying to pronounce Kyoung-Ju.
Donald Albert, who often sported a flat white cap in his heyday, won five PGA Tour titles between 1979 and 1996. Son Matt has played on the Web.com Tour for a number of years.
Sam Snead’s nephew and eight-time PGA Tour winner was christened Jesse Carlyle perhaps triggering the initial thing.
Another Korean name simplified for the English tongue. Hur Suk-ho is the real name of the eight-time Japan Tour winner who finished 11th in the 2006 Open.
Shiv Shankar Prasad popped up out of nowhere to pinch the first ever tour event in his native country – the 2008 Indian Masters. Second name is perhaps best left to the initial only.
Darren Andrew spent many years flitting between the PGA and Web.com Tours before his breakthrough win in the 2011 AT&T at Pebble Beach. Added a second victory in the 2013 Shell Houston Open.
No, we’d never heard of this lady who made her LPGA Tour debut in 1975 either. But we do know that HB stands for Helen Beth.
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Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly. He is an expert on the Rules of Golf having qualified through an R&A course to become a golf referee. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 91 of the Next 100, making him well-qualified when it comes to assessing and comparing our premier golf courses. He has now played 1,000 golf courses worldwide in 35 countries, from the humblest of nine-holers in the Scottish Highlands to the very grandest of international golf resorts. He reached the 1,000 mark on his 60th birthday in October 2023 on Vale do Lobo's Ocean course. Put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content.
Jezz can be contacted via Twitter - @JezzEllwoodGolf
Jeremy is currently playing...
Driver: Ping G425 LST 10.5˚ (draw setting), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 55 S shaft
3 wood: Ping G425 Max 15˚ (set to flat +1), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 65 S shaft
Hybrid: Ping G425 17˚, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Orange 80 S shaft
Irons 3-PW: Ping i525, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Wedges: Ping Glide 4.0 50˚ and 54˚, 12˚ bounce, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Putter: Ping Fetch 2021 model, 33in shaft (set flat 2)
Ball: Varies but mostly now TaylorMade Tour Response
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