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Elated Faldo receives knighthood

Sir Nick Faldo
Faldo proudly displays the medal presented to him by the Queen on Tuesday

Six-time major winner Sir Nick Faldo expressed his delight at being knighted by the Queen at a ceremony at Windsor Castle on Tuesday.

The 52-year-old received the honour off the back of his achievements in golf, which make him Britain's most successful player of the modern era.

"I had dreams as a young boy of being a golfer and winning tournaments, but you don't dream of this," said Faldo.

"It was amazing. That was an unbelievable experience."

In a career spanning over 30 years Faldo won the Open three times, the Masters three times, twice claimed the European Order of Merit and amassed 30 wins on the European Tour.

Faldo's major victories all fell within a nine-year stretch between 1987 and 1996, a period during which he dominated the sport, but on Tuesday he chose to focus instead upon the moment his love for golf began.

"The Queen said: 'You've been in the game a long time'," revealed Faldo. "I said: 'Yes, ma'am - for 30 years'.

"I played my first round of golf on my 14th birthday.


"When I found out in the summer (about the knighthood), my first thought was of riding my bike through the woods to the golf course when I was just starting out."

Asked about which of his major victories was most special, Faldo replied: "They all mean a hell of a lot.

"Majors are like children, it's impossible to pick, but the first one is special because you finally break through."

Having made 11 Ryder Cup appearances, winning a record 23 points and helping Europe to victory five times, Faldo's most recent high-profile contribution to the game was as captain of the European team for the 2008 Ryder Cup, which lost to the US at Valhalla in Kentucky, United States.

He had words of encouragement for the side who will be attempting to win back the trophy in 2010 at Celtic Manor in Wales.

"I'm rooting for the guys to go and win the Ryder Cup back," he said.

Faldo, who is from Welwyn Garden City was watched during the castle investiture by his four children, Natalie, Matthew, Georgia and Emma.

His knighthood follows on from the MBE he received in 1998.

He is the second golfer to be knighted after Sir Henry Cotton, who accepted the honour in 1987 but died later that year meaning it was bestowed posthumously.

Faldo also picked up the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award following his 1989 Masters triumph.

Archive - highlights from Nick Faldo's glittering career in golf

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see also
Faldo knighted in Queen's honours
12 Jun 09 |  Sport Homepage
Faldo's career in photos
12 Jun 09 |  Golf
Faldo proud of team despite loss
21 Sep 08 |  Golf
Faldo will not play in 2008 Open
20 May 08 |  Golf

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