The first PGA Tour “Major” begins Thursday. The Masters may be the most prodigious of the four.
I’m positive that when Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, and Phil Mickelson were young boys, they had dreams of wearing the “green jacket”, even if it wasn’t their favorite shade. Of the four, only Rory is not the owner of one of the most admired symbols of the game’s excellence. At least not yet.
Tiger has four of them, Phil three, and Bubba’s first was last year. Watson’s tears of joy after his final putt will be remembered for all time.
Tiger Woods, the number one ranked golfer in the world, and leader in the FedEx cup, is favored to win 2013 Masters. But those of us who watch golf know that it really doesn’t mean anything. All 92 entrants start off with the same score. As ESPN broadcaster always says, “that’s why they play the game”.
Tiger has been playing well. His short irons and putting have been a thing of beauty. And he would be the first to tell you that tournaments are won or lost on the greens.
The Masters began in 1934, and was won by Horton Smith, who won it again in 1936. The tournament was cancelled in 1943, 44, and 45 because of World War II. The list of winners is also a list of golf legends. Sam Snead, Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson, Jimmy Demaret, Tom Watson, Arnold Palmer, and Jack Nicklaus all have multiple blazers.
The biggest change about the Masters is prize money. In 1934, Horton Smith took home 1500 dollars, last year Bubba Smith earned 1,440,000 dollars.
Jack Nicklaus has won the tournament the most times, and is also the oldest player to be victorious at age 46. He won it in 1986. Tiger Woods is the youngest to win at age 21 in 1997.
Television coverage is on ESPN on Thursday and Friday, and on CBS Saturday and Sunday, as it has been since 1956, when they used six cameras and covered only the last four holes.
I’ve already warned my bride that I will be a couch, actually ‘recliner’, potato for four days. I did invite her to watch part of it with me to view the lush greenery of Augusta.
Columnist-The Guardian Express