Nick Faldo to make final British Open appearance

    Nick Faldo tees off during a practice round prior to the start of the 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool.

    (CNN)One of Europe's greatest golfers will make what could be his final major appearance at the game's spiritual home in July.

    Nick Faldo will bow out at historic St. Andrews -- the scene of the second of his three British Open successes back in 1990.
    The 57-year-old, who also won three Masters titles, has not played at any of the other three major tournaments since 2006.
      "The Open and St. Andrews will forever hold a significant place in my heart," said the Englishman, who has been a television pundit for the past decade as his playing days tapered off.
      "My fondest moments on my journey with this great sport are woven with pictures and emotions in this setting. It all means a huge amount to me."
      Faldo won his first major at another Scottish course, Muirfield, in 1987, and also triumphed there five years later, but achieved what every golfer dreams of when he took a healthy lead across the famous Swilcan Bridge to triumph by five shots at St. Andrews quarter of a century ago.
      "I look forward to celebrating all that golf has given me as I cross that storied bridge and the wonderful memories I share with many people," said Faldo, who was knighted in 2009.
      "I am grateful for it all and grateful to golf."
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      Faldo will celebrate his 58th birthday during the third round of the tournament, giving him every incentive to make the 36-hole halfway cut.
      "Sir Nick Faldo is an inspirational figure in British golf and has enjoyed a remarkable career in The Open," said Peter Dawson, chief executive of tournament organizer the R&A.
      "He has delighted the galleries over many years with his three victories and consistently outstanding performances. I'm sure there will be great anticipation among the galleries at St. Andrews to see him play in The Open once again and he will receive a rousing ovation worthy of a great champion."
      Faldo's six major titles are the most by any European golfer since Harry Vardon won his seventh in 1914.
      He finished as runner-up at the other two individual majors, the U.S. Open in 1988 and the PGA Championship in 1992. He has a lifetime exemption at Augusta, but missed the cut in his last Masters appearance in 2006.
      Faldo was a top performer in the Ryder Cup teams event, making a record 11 appearances for Europe and scoring a leading 25 points in 46 matches.
      A fiercely competitive and often controversial figure, Faldo was unable to translate his playing success to the Ryder Cup captaincy, with his Europe team suffering a comprehensive defeat by the U.S. at Valhalla in 2008.
      American great Tom Watson, who turns 66 in September, will also this year make his final showing at the UK's only major. His first of five British Open victories was at Carnoustie 40 years ago.