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Golf News: - Posted 15th June 1998

Christer Lindberg, a pillar of Swedish golf, dies

By Anders Janson - Editor, Swedish Golf Federation

Sweden - Christer Lindberg, one of the most important people in the evolution of golf in Sweden died on 11th June aged 61.

Christer and elder brother, Magnus, both took up the game of golf at a young age and both reached the top level as amateur players. Christer played on the Swedish National team in five matches and was beaten only once.

He was involved in the administration of golf during the first Swedish professional tournament, the Volvo Open in 1970. That tournament became the Scandinavian Enterprise Open in 1973, and developed into the Volvo Scandinavian Masters. He organised, he worked with the sponsors and he held his hand on its economy.

The next step in his golfing career was to become Director of the Swedish PGA, a position he combined with the role of director of Lindingo GK, one of the oldest clubs in Sweden. During his near 20 years with the PGA, the organisation grew from 130 to more than 1,000 members. He organised for a new office to be built, he employed assistants (one of which was Annika Sorenstam) and he organised sponsorship deals which gave the Swedish PGA a sound economic body.

He was one of the creators of the system of "Open Golf" in 1983 (the still existing system which makes all tournaments in Sweden open to both amateurs and professionals). But the most important work was his strong support of the Swedish Golf Tour. On that our which soon became Scandinavian, all the big names of Swedish golf in recent years have gained their education. Christer was extremely proud when he was able to follow "his" players. He was a very happy person at Valderrama last autumn when Jesper Parnevik and Per-Ulrik Johansson made their great contributions to the European victory in the Ryder Cup.

Christer Lindberg's never-ending work for golf in Europe was also to be found in his ambition to create the PGA of Europe, an organisation founded in 1990 to ensure that golf professionals all over Europe are given proper education. Christer was Chairman of the PGA of Europe from 1990 to 1994 and upon his retirement given the honorary status of "President". For more than 15 years he was a member of the Professional Technical Committee and a strong supporter of both the European Tour and the European Challenge Tour. Indeed, he made a huge contribution to the growth of the European Challenge Tour.

Christer Lindberg was a worker, a doer and a lover of the great game of golf. He is survived by his wife Marie and will be greatly missed by all his associates and those who knew him through his lifetime of endeavour dedicated to the development of golf.