Zach Johnson, USA

Zach Johnson is a U.S. professional golfer who has enjoyed a long and illustrious career, including memorable major wins at the 2007 Masters and the 2015 Open Championship at St. Andrews.

Born in Iowa City, Iowa in February 1976, Johnson began golfing at the tender age of ten, selecting the Elmcrest Country Club as the place to practice his game. An athletic child, the professional also took part in baseball, basketball and football until he found his calling. During his early career, Johnson led the Regis High School golf team to an Iowa 3A state championship as part of his sophomore year in 1992, before enrolling at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa in 1994.

In 1998 Johnson turned professional and began honing his craft on the developmental Tour circuit. By 2003, the American topped the money list on the Nationwide Tour, earning him an automatic promotion to the PGA TOUR. Johnson went on to win his first PGA Title at the 2004 BellSouth Classic and later qualified for the U.S. Ryder Cup team in 2006.

The following year Johnson secured his first major win at the 2007 Masters Tournament. During the event, the then 31-year-old shot a final round of 69 to emerge victorious against some of the sport’s most influential players, including Tiger Woods and South African players Retief Goosen and Rory Sabbatini. Former world number one Woods’ closing three par shots saw the U.S. professional complete a task where 95 other opponents had failed, leaving Johnson to enjoy victory after one of the most difficult weeks in the history of the thrilling tournament.

“I don’t hit it very far, I don’t overpower a golf course, but I think I’m a pretty decent putter. At Augusta National, putting is premium,” Johnson told the New York Times after his win.

After winning at least one event on the PGA Tour every season between 2007 and 2010, Johnson was unable to extend his victory streak to five consecutive years in 2011, but commentators suggested he could soon return to his best.

“I didn’t have a great year, but I feel good about where things are going,” Johnson said in 2011. “I’m never content regardless of where I finish. There were some positives, but there are also some things I’d like to polish up.”

The following season Johnson was back on form. The Titleist player finished second at The Players Championship and the RBC Heritage as well as winning the Crowne Plaza Invitational and the John Deere Classic. Consistent play continued for Johnson as he entered 2013 winning the BMW Championship and moving into the Top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings for the first time in his career.

In July 2015 Johnson made history with his Open Championship win, becoming only the sixth golfer in history to have won majors at both Augusta and St. Andrews. Joining an elite group of golf greats including Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Nick Faldo, Seve Ballesteros and Tiger Woods.

Career wins:

2004 - BellSouth Classic
2007 - Masters
2007 - AT&T Classic
2008 - Valero Texas Open
2009 - Sony Open in Hawaii
2009 - Valero Texas Open
2010 - Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial
2012 – Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial
2012 – John Deere Classic
2013 – BMW Championship
2014 – Hyundai Tournament of Champions
2015 - The Open Championship