Greg Norman, the Australian Golfing Great, Nearly Severs Hand With a Chainsaw

Pam WrightLife

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Greg Norman is a very lucky man Sunday after nearly severing his hand off following an accident with a chainsaw.

Australia's former world No. 1 golfing great said he was recovering in a US hospital Sunday after nearly cutting off his hand with a chainsaw.

Norman, 59, announced the accident with a photo posted to his Instagram account. The photo shows the golf pro lying in a hospital bed with his left arm covered in heavy bandages.

The caption accompanying the photo eludes to just how close the PGA champion came to losing his hand.

"Working with a chainsaw ALWAYS be respectful of the unexpected. I was one lucky man today. Damaged, but not down & out. Still have left hand," Norman tweeted.

Last week, Norman posted a photo of himself using a chainsaw to cut back a small tree, presumably at his home.

Norman helped promote the game of golf with his Australian flair, winning two British Opens and retaining his world No.1 spot for 331 weeks in the 1980s and 1990s, and was a role model for many up-and-coming Australian golf pros, including world No.2 Adam Scott.

Scott honored his predecessor after becoming the first Australian to win the Masters at Augusta last year.

"Part of this is for him (Norman) because he's given me so much time and inspiration and belief," Scott said at the time of his win.

Norman's accident is eerily reminiscent of the near-fatal accident of fellow Australian Jack Newton, winner of the British Open and Augusta Masters runner-up.

The accident occurred in 1983 when Newton was at the height of his career. The golfer accidentally walked into the spinning propeller of a small plane he was preparing to board at Sydney, losing his right arm and eye, and suffering grave abdominal injuries.

In the days following the accident, Newton remained in a coma for several days, followed by eight weeks in intensive care. He then spent weeks in rehabilitation before returning to work as a television and radio golf commentator.

Pam Wright