Announced: By Braden Thornberry, that he has turned professional and will forgo the spring season of his senior year at Ole Miss. Thornberry, 21, of Olive Branch, Miss., won the 2017 NCAA title and the Haskins Award as college golf’s top player. He also won the 2018 McCormack Medal as the top-ranked amateur in the world and leaves Ole Miss with a school-record 11 tournament victories. He tied for 74th in the recent Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament and holds conditional status for the developmental tour. According to Sean Martin of PGATour.com, Thornberry likely will receive the maximum seven sponsor exemptions allowed to non-Tour members because of his successful amateur career. Thornberry made six starts on the PGA Tour as an amateur, including a T-4 in his debut, at the 2017 FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis, Tenn., near his hometown.
Named: As the Irish Professional of the Year, Stephanie Meadow of Northern Ireland. After recovering from a stress fracture in her spine in 2017, Meadow posted eight top-10 results in 2018 on the Symetra Tour, including one victory, and reclaimed an LPGA tour card. Meadow, 26, a former college golfer at Alabama, was the first female to win the award from the Irish Golf Writers’ Association.
Sold: Wimbledon Park Golf Club, to the neighboring All England Tennis Club, for £65 million (about $81.9 million), in a vote approved by 82 percent of members at the 120-year-old London golf club. The tennis club, site of the annual Wimbledon grand-slam event, intends to expand its operations onto the 73-acre golf site. Each of the nearly 800 Wimbledon Park members will receive £85,000 (about $107,100). Among them, TV journalist Piers Morgan, who tweeted: “Very sad news. Played there for over 30yrs & voted against the sale. Hope the superb pro-shop team get properly looked after.” The golf club is expected to continue operations through 2021.
Voted: By his peers on the Asian Tour as its player of the year, American John Catlin, a three-time winner this season. Catlin, 28, a Californian who played college golf at New Mexico, was a two-time Asian Development Tour champion who turned pro in 2013.