Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

New Year Honour for Ryder Cup Hero Monty

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

New Year Honour for Ryder Cup Hero Monty

Article excerpt

Colin Montgomerie revealed he was "hugely honoured" to have been awarded an OBE in the New Year Honours List.

The Scot was originally awarded the MBE in 1998 after winning the European tour Order of Merit for the sixth of seven successive times.

This year he has fallen from 41st to 81st in the world rankings but memorably sank the winning putt in Europe's record-breaking Ryder Cup victory in Detroit in September.

He won three out of four games at Oakland Hills, extending his recent record in the event to a brilliant 14 wins, three halves and only three defeats.

Montgomerie, who had a very painful divorce to cope with during the season, has not lost any singles game since making his Cup debut in 1991.

"I'm obviously hugely honoured," he said. "What I remember most about this year's Ryder Cup is how much I enjoyed being part of a great team.

"This honour is wonderful for me personally and I'm very pleased to get it. I feel I have a lot more to give and it fills me with confidence going into 2005."

Two weeks ago Montgomerie was the recipient of the Professional Golfers' Association's recognition award for services to golf.

After initially hinting he might be interested in taking over from Bernhard Langer as captain he has now said he hopes to play his way into the 2006 team for the first Ryder Cup in Ireland.

Kelly Holmes' astonishing year ended on another high with the double Olympic champion being made a Dame in the New Year Honours List, while rower Matthew Pinsent joins the elite group of sporting knights.

Britain's Olympic champions dominate the list with all gold medallists receiving honours, while Redcar-based Tanni Grey-Thompson, Britain's most successful Paralympian, is also made a Dame.

Holmes was the first Briton for more than 80 years to win a double Olympic gold in athletics, with victories over 800 and 1500 metres in Athens.

Pinsent becomes Sir Matthew after bringing an end to an illustrious rowing career by winning gold at a fourth successive Games in the coxless fours.

His three team-mates have also been honoured with an OBE for James Cracknell and MBEs for Ed Coode and Steve Williams. …

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