'The Board Members offer their congratulations to Retief,' said Neil Coles, Chairman of the European Tour Board of Directors. 'His victories at the U.S. Open Championship in 2001, along with wins in the Scottish Open at Loch Lomond and Telefonica Open de Madrid, provided superb evidence of his ability to play golf at the highest level.'
Goosen became a member of the European Tour after winning the 1992 European Q-School Finals. Since then he has played in 227 events on the European circuit, collecting eight titles on the way. He has finished in the top 10 59 times.
The South African earned his maiden title on the European Tour in 1996 at the Staley Hall Mortimer Challenge. However, 2001 was the year of the Goose beginning with the U.S. Open and ending with a World Golf Championships - EMC World Cup in Japan, playing alongside fellow countryman Ernie Els.
Goosen has carried his momentum into 2002 winning the Johnnie Walker Classic in Australia and the Dimension Data Pro-Am for his first victory in South Africa since 1995. He is currently first in the Order of Merit and has climbed to a career-best seventh on the Official World Golf Ranking.
'I am delighted to receive Honorary Life Membership of the European Tour,' said Goosen. 'I have always enjoyed playing on the European Tour and it was a wonderful feeling to win the Order of Merit for the first -- but hopefully not the last -- time in 2001.'
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