The White House confirmed that Trump would award the nation's highest civilian honor to golfers Annika Sorenstam, Babe Didrikson Zaharias, and Gary Player.
The ceremony is normally open to the press. but not this time around. W.L. Pate Jr., president of the Babe Zaharias Foundation, was expected to accept the medal in honor of Zaharias, who died in 1956.
Currently, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Charlie Sifford and Tiger Woods are the only golfers to receive the Medal of Freedom. She also won two Olympic gold medals in track and field.
According to GolfChannel.com (per the New York Post), the ceremony "included 50-60 people and went off 'without a hitch.'" The report notes that both Player and Sorenstam played golf with Trump in 2019. "They represent all of golf, a mostly lilywhite sport that has struggled for decades, to its continuing detriment, to attract women and people of colour".
Sörenstam won 94 professional tournaments across the globe - including 72 on the U.S. LPGA Tour, third most in its history, and 10 major championships - before retiring at 38 following the 2008 season.
Trump has awarded 23 Medals of Freedom since he took office, with 14 given to sports figures including NFL Hall-of-Famers Roger Staubach and Alan Page, former wrestler Dan Gable, and former college football coach Lou Holtz.
Player won the PGA Tour 24 times and is one of just five players to win the career Grand Slam. She also won silver in the high jump.
Player and Sorenstam, who recently retweeted Jack Nicklaus' ringing endorsement of Trump's re-election bid, were taken to task in the USA media for dragging golf into the mire.
Zaharias was the first woman to play in a PGA Tour event, in 1935, and remains the only woman to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.
"Her towering legacy will shine forever in the history of American athletics", the White House said in a statement. He won nine major championships in his career.