Imagine Golf Blogs

The Week In Golf April 5-11

Featuring more Green Jackets than the British infantry

Posted Apr 06, 2010 by Iestyn George

seve

April 5, 1959: Art Wall, famous for carding an amazing 45 holes-in-one in competitive and non-competitive play, birdied five of the last six holes for a 66 during his final round of The Masters at Augusta National. In doing so he passed 12 players on the leaderboard to win The Masters by one stroke.

April 6, 1958: Arnold Palmer won his first major golf tournament thanks, in no small part, to an eagle at the 13th hole during his final round, which prompted writer Herbert Warren Wind to coin the phrase 'Amen Corner' in describing the challenging 11th, 12th and 13th holes at Augusta. This was the first of four Masters victories Arnie enjoyed.

April 7, 1963: Twenty-three year-old Jack Nicklaus won the first of his six Masters titles, becoming the then-youngest Masters champion courtesy of a second-round 66 to bear Tony Lema by one shot.

April 8, 1935:  Gene Sarazen holed out for a double eagle two at the par-5 15th during his final round at The Masters to tie with Craig Wood and force a 36-hole playoff, which Sarazen won by five shots. The shot that was 'heard around the world' became emblematic of golf's growing popularity. In 1990, meanwhile, England's Nick Faldo became the first back-to-back winner of the Masters since Jack Nicklaus in 1965-66 when he overcame Raymond Floyd in a playoff.

April 9 1957: Severiano 'Seve' Ballesteros (pictured) was born in Pedreña, Spain. On this day in 1980, Seve became the first European to win at Augusta, and was at the time the tournament's youngest winner at age 23. April 9th is also rich with history of men claiming Green Jackets on this day. One of the most memorable recent Augusta finishes was on this day in 1995, when Ben Crenshaw won his second Masters on the day after serving as pall-bearer for his late mentor Harvey Penick. In 1950, big-hitting clotheshorse Jimmy Demaret became the first man to win three Masters titles and other Green Jacket winners on this day areinclude Arnold Palmer (1962, third title); Gay Brewer ('67); Jack Nicklaus ('72, fourth title); Tommy Aaron ('73); Gary Player ('78, third title), Vijay Singh ('00); and Phil Mickelson ('06, second title in three years).

April 10, 1997: Tiger Woods carded a 2-under-par 70 in his first professional round at Augusta. The 21-year-old Woods then fired rounds of 66-65-69 over the next three days to beat Tom Kite by 12 shots with a tournament-record score of 270. Eight years later to the day, Tiger slipped on his fourth Green Jacket after beating Chris DiMarco in a playoff, joining Jack Nicklaus (six) and Arnold Palmer (four) as the only players to win more than three Masters titles. Notably, it was on this day in 1975 that Lee Elder was the first African-American golfer to compete at Augusta.
Masters champions on this day include Gary Player, who become the first non-American to win at Augusta in 1961, Sam Snead (1949); Dr Cary Middlecoff (1955);  Palmer (1960, second title); Tom Watson (1977); Seve Ballesteros (1983, second title); Sandy Lyle (1988) and José Maria Olazabal (1994).

April 11, 1966: Jack Nicklaus made it a very special double at Augusta, winning his second straight Masters title - and doing it, thanks to a leap year, on the same calendar day - by squeezing past Gay Brewer and Tommy Jacobs in a playoff. In doing so, The Golden Bear became the first golfer to successfully defend his title at Augusta. April 11th is, of course, rich with men wearing Green Jackets, including José Maria Olazabal, who won his second Masters on this day in 1999 by two shots over Davis Love III. Other winners include Claude Harmon (1948); Charles Coody (1971); Raymond Floyd (1976); Craig 'The Walrus' Stadler (1982), Seve Ballesteros (1983, second title); and Bernhard Langer (1993).

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