Former Australian Open champion, Open Championship and Masters runner-up and icon of Australian golf Jack Newton has passed away. He was 72.

Newton announced he was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease in late 2020 and his family says his passing was due to “health complications”.

Newton’s son, Clint, a former NRL player and chief executive of the Rugby League Players’ Association, released a statement this morning.

“On behalf of our family, it is with great sadness I announce that our courageous and loving husband, father, brother, grandfather, and mate, Jack Newton OAM has passed away overnight due to health complications,” the statement read.

“His passion for sport and contributing to future generations of golfers and the Australian community demonstrates the character of our father, beloved husband, proud brother, adoring grandfather, and maverick mate.

“Dad’s legacy will live on through his wife Jackie, daughter Kristie, son Clint, grandchildren Matilda, Hope, Jessie, Noah, Paige, and Indie.

“In true Jack Newton style, we will celebrate his incredible life; however, for now, our family asks for privacy and we appreciate everyone’s love, support, and friendship throughout his life.”

Newton’s playing career yielded 13 victories in Europe, America, Africa and Australia before a horrific and near-fatal accident at Sydney Airport in July 1983 took his right arm and eye, ending his playing career. In 2020, Australian Golf Digest ranked him 28th on our list of Australia’s 50 Greatest Golfers Of All Time.

He enjoyed an important and multi-faceted post-tour career, most notably through the Jack Newton Junior Golf Foundation, which has nurtured the young careers of some of Australia’s best golfers of the past 40 years:

Newton also enjoyed a long association with Australian Golf Digest as a columnist and is known to many through his years as an insightful television commentator, primarily for the Seven Network.

More on Jack Newton:

Golf NSW honours Jack Newton

Jack Newton reveals to Australian Golf Digest his Alzheimer’s battle

Jack Newton’s induction into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame

Jack Newton on Seve Ballesteros and the end of an era great of shot-making