Golf is a coming together of two critical components, and champions stand apart from the rest with their ability to manage this amalgamation. So, nothing can be better to start our current feature on young and talented golf players than to draw from the experiences of these 10 achievers who have the world drooling over their achievements in a short span.

This sport throws barbs more than roses and the road to perfection is long and hard. This finds no better reflection than top PGA Tour pro Xander Schauffele’s words, “It is golf, all of us are trying to be perfect and it is just an everlasting search.”
Couple this with how Tyrrell Hatton, another top name in world golf, drives himself after a bad day at work. “Tomorrow is a new day, you have new feels…get comfortable again and go out there and try our best.”

Xander and Tyrrell’s observations were perfectly executed by 20-year-old Joohyung ‘Tom’ Kim in his defining win on the world stage in India just before the pandemic kicked in.

Kim, then 17, teed off at the Panasonic Open India, a significant stop on the Asian Tour, in late 2019 as a wide-eyed youngster. The start at the Classic Golf and Country Club was far from ideal but following the prescription of taking it one day at a time,

Kim climbed the leaderboard for what was to be the first of a string of big-ticket wins. Now a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, Kim is at the top of the heap as we look at some of the promising golf players to watch out for.

Rising golf players to have on your radar

1. Cameron Young

rising golf players
Cameron Young at the 123rd U.S. Open Championship at The Los Angeles Country Club on June 18, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Image: Richard HEATHCOTE / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

Age: 25 (May 07, 1997)
Birthplace: Scarborough, New York
Residence: Jupiter, Florida
Turned Professional: 2019

Cameron Young, the Carter Cup’s youngest champion, is well-known among professional golfers. He won consecutive championships on the 2021 Korn Ferry Tour, the feeder line to the PGA Tour, and for the 2021–2022 season was named the PGA Tour Rookie of the Year. Young came second at the Genesis Invitational in 2022 and rose to the top 100 of the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR). At the PGA Championship in May 2022, he tied for third. After a string of standout performances, Young was selected to play on the US Presidents Cup team in 2022.

A fun fact: During the third round of the recent 2023 US Open, Young miraculously saved par after his tee shot — which had flown off the fairway — unexpectedly landed in the golf ball holder of a golf cart.

2. Joohyung Kim

rising golf players
One of the up-and-coming golf players to watch, Joohyung ‘Tom’ Kim is the first player after Tiger Woods to have won twice on the PGA Tour before turning 21. (Image: Joohyung Kim/ Instagram)

Age: 20 (June 21, 2002)
Birthplace: Seoul, South Korea
Residence: Dallas, Texas
Turned Professional: 2018

At the age of 17, Kim became the second-youngest champion on the Asian Tour as he won the Panasonic Open India in 2019. At 20, Kim became the second-youngest PGA Tour winner since 1932. After Tiger Woods, he is also the first player to have won twice on the PGA Tour before turning 21. At the Genesis Scottish Open, Kim made a big impression by tying for third and earning his first top-10 on the PGA Tour. Kim competed well in the AT&T Byron Nelson and the U.S. Open, but it was his remarkable performance at the Renaissance Club that solidified his status as a rising star in the world of professional golf.

3. Austin Eckroat

young golf players to watch
Austin Eckroat is another player that golf fans are keeping a close watch on. (Image: Austin Eckroat/ Instagram)

Age: 24 (Jan 12, 1999)
Birthplace: Edmond, Oklahoma
Residence: Oklahoma, United States
Turned Professional: 2021

A 23-year-old Oklahoman, Austin Eckroat is another player who golf fans are keeping a close watch on. At Oklahoma State, where he was a four-time All-American, his team won the NCAA championship in 2018. He was a member of the Walker Cup-winning team that helped the United States win at Seminole in 2021. To have a chance of securing a PGA Tour card from the Korn Ferry Tour Finals, Eckroat needed a strong finish. He made an outstanding impression by emerging solo second with a final-round score of 68. His other accomplishments during the 2022–23 season include finishing 64th in the Fortinet Championship and 48th in the Sanderson Farms Championship.

4. Sahith Theegala

young golf players
Sahith Theegala plays his shot from the eighth tee during the second round of the 2023 US Open Championship. (Image: Andrew Redington / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

Age: 25 (December 4, 1997)
Birthplace: Fullerton, California
Residence: Houston, Texas
Turned Professional: 2020

Sahith Theegala is easily among the top golfers to watch out for. He was a three-time NCAA All-American at Pepperdine University. Theegala became only the fifth golfer in history to win all three awards in the same year when he won the Haskins Award, Ben Hogan Award, and the Jack Nicklaus Award in 2020. He participated in a few PGA Tour events in 2020–21, and after several top-10 results in the Korn Ferry Tour finals, he was awarded a PGA Tour card for 2021–22. Theegala achieved his first top-10 finish at the Fortinet Championship in September 2022. Most notably, the 25-year-old Indian American has earned a berth among the top 50 golfers in the world just three years after turning pro.

5. Collin Morikawa

young golf players
Collin Morikawa started on the PGA Tour by making the cut 22 times in a row, second only to Tiger Woods’ 25 consecutive cuts. (Image: Colin Morikawa/ Instagram)

Age: 26 (February 6, 1997)
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
Residence: Las Vegas, Nevada
Turned Professional: 2019

Collin Morikawa started on the PGA Tour by making the cut 22 times in a row, second only to Tiger Woods‘ 25 consecutive cuts. He has won five times on the PGA Tour, including the 2020 PGA Championship and 2021 Open Championship, both of which he won on his debut. Morikawa remained at the top of the World Amateur Golf Ranking for three weeks in May 2018. Furthermore, he became the first American to win the Race to Dubai on the DP World Tour.

6. Sungjae Im

golf players
Sungjae Im celebrating his first PGA Tour victory at the Honda Classic in 2020. (Image: Sungjae Im/ Instagram)

Age: 25 (30 March 1998)
Birthplace: Cheongju, South Korea
Residence: Jeju, South Korea
Turned Professional: 2015

South Korean Sungjae Im, aka Sung-jae, was named the 2019 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year (Arnold Palmer Award). In March 2020, Im earned his first PGA Tour victory at the Honda Classic. In the FedEx Cup era, he became just the 13th rookie to qualify for the Tour Championship. Im tied for second place at the Masters Tournament in November 2020. On October 10, 2021, he competed on the PGA Tour for the 100th time and won the Shriners Children’s Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas, Nevada. He played five matches and earned a spot on the international team for the 2022 Presidents Cup.

7. Viktor Hovland

golf players
(Image: Viktor Hovland/ Instagram)

Age: 25 (18 September 1997)
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Residence: Stillwater, Oklahoma
Turned Professional: 2019

In 2018, Viktor, still in his early golfing years, became the first Norwegian to win the U.S. Amateur Championship. The following year, he won the Ben Hogan Award. When he won the Puerto Rico Open in 2020, he became the first Norwegian to achieve victory on the PGA Tour. With victories at the BMW International Open and Hero World Challenge in 2021, he brought more glory for his country. Hovland rose to No. 3 in the Official World Golf Ranking in 2022 after winning the Dubai Desert Classic.

8. Rasmus Hojgaard

Rasmus Hojgaard became the third-youngest winner on the DP World Tour at 18 after taking home the 2019 AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open title. (Image: Rasmus Hojgaard/ Instagram)

Age: 22 (12 March 2001)
Birthplace: Billund, Denmark
Turned Professional: 2019

A pro from Denmark, Rasmus became the third-youngest winner on the DP World Tour at 18 after taking home the 2019 AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open title. Before turning 21, Hojgaard won all three of his DP World Tour titles. In just his fifth DP World Tour start, he won for the first time. He became the second-youngest to win two DP World Tour titles when he won the 2020 UK Championship. Hojgaard ended 2022 with nine straight top-30 finishes, including four top-10s in his final six starts, and was ranked 16th on the DP World Tour Rankings.

9. Ludvig Aberg

Ludvig Åberg is currently ranked #1 by the PGA TOUR University and is still an amateur. (Image: Ludvig Åberg/ Instagram)

Age: 23 (31 October 1999)
Birthplace: Eslöv, Sweden
Residence: Lubbock, Texas

The 23-year-old Swede, is currently ranked #1 by the PGA TOUR University and is still an amateur. Aberg is also ranked at the top in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. Aberg, a senior at Texas Tech University, received the Ben Hogan Award in 2022 for being the best college player in the U.S. He is also the winner of both the 2021 Jones Cup Invitational and 2022 Big 12 Championship. He won The Prestige at PGA West for a third straight year in February 2023. Through the end of 2023, Aberg will compete on the PGA Tour as a fully exempt member.

10. Matti Schmid

Matti Schmid was the top-ranked amateur in Germany and the star player for the German national team. (Image: Matti Schmid/ Instagram)

Age: 25 (18 November 1997)
Birthplace: Eslöv, Sweden
Residence: Maxhütte-Haidhof, Germany
Turned Professional: 2021

Matti’s amateur career was filled with triumphs on the European Amateur Championship in 2019 and 2020, as well as the European Amateur Team Championship in 2020. He was the top-ranked amateur in Germany and the star player for the German national team. He qualified for the PGA and DP World Tours as a result of his stellar performances, and he went on to compete in the prestigious 2021 Open Championship, 2021 US Open, 2021 Porsche European Open, 2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational, and 2021 Porsche European Open. In December 2021, Schmid received the Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year award for the 2021 DP World Tour season. He tied for third place at the Steyn City Championship in South Africa in March 2022.

(Main and featured image: Richard Heathcote/ Getty Images North America/ Getty Images via AFP)

This story first appeared on Prestige Online Malaysia

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written by.

Robin Bose

Robin Bose has covered multi-discipline sport for prominent publications in India like The Statesman and Outlook before being bitten by the golf bug in 2008. He specialised in the sport and covered it across the world for Hindustan Times over 13 years. After moving on, he divides time between setting up his venture, TheGolfingHub, and watching his teenage son chase his dream in golf.

Young Up-And-Coming Golf Players You Should Keep An Eye Out For