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Ryder Cup: New award named after Jack Nicklaus and Tony Jacklin to be introduced at Whistling Straits

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Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA of America have jointly announced a new accolade for the 43rd Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits this September, with The Nicklaus–Jacklin Award presented by Aon to be awarded to one player from each team

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Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA of America have announcing a new award for this year’s contest at Whistling Straits: The Nicklaus – Jacklin Award presented by Aon.

Players competing at the 43rd Ryder Cup this September will have the chance to become the first recipients of The Nicklaus-Jacklin Award presented by Aon.

Named after the famous concession by Jack Nicklaus in the 1969 Ryder Cup, where he gave a two-foot putt to Tony Jacklin to halve their match and ensure the contest would finish tied at 16-16, the award aims to recognise the sportsmanship, teamwork, and performance within one of the biggest events in the sporting calendar.

The first-of-its-kind accolade has been jointly created by the PGA of America, Ryder Cup Europe and Aon, with one player from each team set to receive the award after the conclusion of this year’s contest at Whistling Straits.

Team Europe are current holders of the Ryder Cup after 17.5-10.5 victory at Le Golf National in 2018 Team Europe are current holders of the Ryder Cup after 17.5-10.5 victory at Le Golf National in 2018

Nicklaus, Jacklin, other past European and U.S. Ryder Cup Captains, PGA of America President Jim Richerson, PGA of Great Britain and Ireland Chairman Alan White, representatives from Sky and NBC Sports and Carlo Clavarino, Executive Chairman, International Business, Aon, will be the deciding committee, with the award set to be given to the players who have best embodied the spirit of the event and seeing the bigger picture and making critical decisions relating to sportsmanship, teamwork and performance.

“From inception, the Ryder Cup was imagined as a spirited but friendly competition amongst allies,” said Seth Waugh, CEO of the PGA of America. “At its core, this remarkable tradition is based on the fundamental pillars of sportsmanship, teamwork and performance.

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“We wanted to recognise and celebrate that key foundational tenet and so in collaboration with Aon, created an award to honour Jack Nicklaus and Tony Jacklin’s historic act from 1969 that exemplified those honourable traits and set the stage for the future of the Ryder Cup.”

The presentation ceremony will be shown live on Sky Sports on September 26, as part of round-the-clock coverage of Ryder Cup week, with the prize-giving live on NBC Sports in the USA and globally via the World Feed.

“There’s always a decision that defines you in the Ryder Cup and to have an award that also highlights that decision is innovative for the game of golf and the Ryder Cup,” Jacklin said.

“When I look back on my career, to be a part of Ryder Cups, the team atmosphere, and the importance of the decisions that followed – to give players the opportunity to win an award based on that decision carries a lot of weight and will be a key accomplishment in their career.”

Tony Jacklin (left) and Jack Nicklaus (right) were captains during the 1987 contest at Muirfield Village Tony Jacklin (left) and Jack Nicklaus (right) were captains during the 1987 contest at Muirfield Village

Nicklaus, an 18-time major champion, two-time US Ryder Cup Team captain and six-time US Ryder Cup team member, added: “The excitement and energy surrounding the Ryder Cup always tests your poise, composure and decision-making, and when it matters most.

“The challenge is that every decision is magnified to its fullest because we’re not playing for just ourselves, but we’re playing for our country, teammates, captains, and fans.

“I’m glad to see that everyone involved in the Ryder Cup is identifying the importance of the choices these players make in the heat of competition and on one of golf’s biggest stages, and that they are recognizing and celebrating individuals who approach this competition with the proper spirit and who put an emphasis on good will and camaraderie.”

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