Golf

Brendan Lawlor is the world No.1 golfer with a disability

By Jack Bantock, CNN

Updated 0800 GMT (1600 HKT) May 12, 2022
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Now ranked the world's top golfer with a disability, Brendan Lawlor was a rising amateur golfer when he competed at a pro-am event prior to the Irish Open in July 2019. Less than three months later, the Irishman turned professional and signed with former One Direction star Niall Horan's Modest! Golf Management company. Ross Kinnaird / Getty Images
Later in July, Lawlor triumphed at the European Disabled Golf Association's (EDGA) maiden Scottish Open. Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images
Born with Ellis-van Creveld syndrome, a genetic condition characterized by short limb dwarfism, Lawlor has no knuckles on the top of his fingers. The EDGA Scottish Open was the first of two disability events scheduled on the European Tour for 2019. Here, Lawlor poses with fellow winner Bernd Wiesberger. Andrew Redington / Getty Images
The second event came at the EDGA Dubai Finale in November 2019, with Lawlor finishing fifth as Englishman George Groves won the inaugural event. Ross Kinnaird / Getty Images
In August 2020, Lawlor became the first golfer with disabilities to compete in a European Tour event, taking part in the ISPS Handa UK Championship at The Belfry in England. Ross Kinnaird / Getty Images
Not long after his history-making outing at the Belfry, the Covid-19 pandemic paused Lawlor's pro career as events were canceled. Back on the green at the EDGA Cazoo Open in July 2021, Lawlor sunk his putt on the 18th to take victory. Warren Little / Getty Images
At Galgorm, Northern Ireland, in August 2021, Lawlor poses with the EDGA World Disability Invitational trophy, a win that moved Horan (center left) to tears. An advocate for disability golf, the former One Direction star is now a close friend of Lawlor's. Charles McQuillan / Getty Images
Lawlor and two-time major winner Collin Morikawa celebrate their DP Tour World Championship victories in Dubai in November 2021. Andrew Redington / Getty Images
Lawlor tees off at the inaugural Golf for the Disabled (G4D) Tour, at the British Masters in May 2022, finishing fourth at The Belfry. Andrew Redington / Getty Images