World No.6 Minjee Lee has become the first woman to win Australian golf’s most prestigious individual honour; the Greg Norman Medal.
Australia’s best performing, male or female, golfer on the international stage in 2018, Lee is the third recipient of the medal following Jason Day in 2015 and 2016 and Marc Leishman in 2017.
“I’m humbled to have won such a prestigious award alongside two amazing golfers already in Marc and Jason,” said Lee.
“It’s a great honour, Greg is arguably one of the greatest golfers to ever come out of Australia so to win an award attached to his name is really special.
“I’ve had a great 2018 season and this is a really nice way to be acknowledged for that, thanks to my team for their hard work throughout the year, hopefully we can have a bigger and better one next year.”
Beginning the 2018 season ranked 19th in the world, West Australian Lee got her year off to a flying start winning the Vic Open for a second time by a commanding five shots.
She was close to back-to-back wins in Australia finishing runner-up at the ActewAGL Canberra Classic followed by a top-5 finish at the ISPS HANDA Women’s Australian Open.
Lee recorded a further four top-10s on the LPGA Tour including 2nd at the Mediheal Championship before winning the Volvik Championship.
This win ignited a blistering run of form with Lee recording six finishes inside the top-4 to reach the ranking of World Number 5, having started the year ranked 19th.
RIGHT: Lee won the Volvik Championship in May. PHOTO: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images.
Minjee cemented her outstanding performance this year as the best performing Australian female in all Majors and the Race to CME Globe final standings.
Greg Norman couldn’t be on the Gold Coast for the Awards Ceremony but sent Lee a video message.
“Australian professional golf has seen a successful year, with notable performances from both our male and female players around the world,” said Norman.
“We have seen the emergence of some great young players, making their name in the US and Europe, and seen many of our established players continue their successful careers.
“One nominee for the Greg Norman Medal this year stood out above the rest.
“Two tournament wins, one in Australia at the Vic Open, and one on the LPGA tour at the Volvik Championship, outstanding performances in all major championship events, and a fifth place standing on the Race to CME Globe, her ranking moved from 19th to 5th in the world.
“It is my honour to announce the first female recipient of the Greg Norman Medal, by virtue of her success in 2018 is Minjee Lee.”
“I’m honoured to announce Minjee Lee as the 2018 Greg Norman Medal winner.”
The evening also saw members of the professional golf circuit, corporate world and golf community gather to celebrate the achievements of both vocational and tour PGA Professionals.
The other awards presented on the evening included:
PGA Club Professional of the Year
Adam Norlander – Headland Golf Club – QLD
PGA Coach of the Year
Khan Pullen – Jack Newton Junior Golf Foundation – NSW
PGA Management Professional of the Year
Gary Booby – The Ridge Golf Course and Driving Range – NSW
PGA Game Development Professional of the Year
Jason Laws – Newcastle Golf Club – NSW
PGA National Trainee of the Year
Cooper Ecclestone – Victoria Park Golf Complex – QLD
ALPG Player of the Year
Minjee Lee – WA
Legends Tour Player of the Year
Brad Burns – QLD
ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia Player of the Year
Matt Millar – ACT
The Greg Norman Medal Dinner, which is proudly supported by the City of Gold Coast, tees off the PGA’s flagship tournament, the Australian PGA Championship, at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast from November 29 – December 2.
Marc Leishman, Cameron Smith and Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston will headline a stellar list of Australian and international players who will compete for the Joe Kirkwood Cup.
The 2018 tournament will feature an array of entertainment on and off the course, but it’s the Million Dollar Hole where the tournament really comes alive. While players aim to ace their way to a big pay day, fans will be celebrating in the sun with great food, music and entertainment.
The Australian PGA Championship is one of the PGA of Australia’s flagship events; co-sanctioned by the European Tour and ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia. The tournament honour roll features an incredible list of past champions including Cameron Smith (2017), Harold Varner III (2016) Adam Scott (2013) Greg Chalmers (2014 & 2011), Peter Senior (2010) and Geoff Ogilvy (2008).