It seems the PGA and European Tours will be one man short on the fashion front.
Jesper Parnevik will likely be forced to hang up his clubs, as well as his Johan Lindeberg clothing and flip-up hat.
Parnevik was best known for his attire, an eccentric style that burst onto the American golf scene and made the Swede a hit upon his arrival to the PGA Tour in the mid-90's.
Last week at the Northern Trust Open, Parnevik was forced to withdraw due to a broken vertebra in his back. It has been reported he will have to undergo joint fusion surgery, and is meeting with a Detroit physiotherapist to discuss his possible options.
Sadly, the future looks dim for a man who always wore the brightest clothing in any event in which he participated.
A decorated professional, Parnevik has twice finished runner up at the Open Championship (1994, 1997) and has 13 total professional wins, five coming on the PGA Tour and four on the European Tour. Between 2000 and 2001, Parnevik was also able to rise to number seven on the World Golf Rankings, the highest ranking for a Swedish professional until Henrik Stenson surpassed that mark in 2007.
Parnevik also made three Ryder Cup teams, two of which he helped guide the team from Europe to victory.
It was during the three Ryder Cups in which he often showcased his individuality among his peers on Tour, once wearing a flip-up hat, an accessory that became his trademark, with the Ryder Cup logo on the bottom of the visor.
His most memorable wins on the PGA Tour came at the 2001 Honda Classic and the 2000 GTE Byron Nelson Classic, in which he defeated Phil Mickelson and Davis Love III in a playoff.
When he burst onto the PGA Tour, it was during a time when golf seemed to be uninteresting to the American public, due to the game having no face or true superstar. Parnevik was able to change that by giving the game of golf flair and excitement through his simple choice of clothing. He was a player who dressed loud, carried himself well, and even could have fun with the media.
Parnevik knows that it would take a "miracle" for doctors to find a way to make it possible for his professional career to continue, and it is sad to see a man who still has so much love and respect for the game cut down due to a career-ending injury.
Recently, the only headlines Parnevik received were due to his comments regarding Tiger Woods' personal life. Parnevik publicly voiced his regret of introducing Woods to future wife Elin Nordegren, and said he had lost all respect for the best golfer in the world as a man, as well as a father.
Unfortunately, those could be the last headlines Parnevik makes as a professional as it seems his injury will force him into retirement.
So long Jesper, thank you for the memories.
Well, thank you for the attire we will never be able to forget.
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