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The Top 5 Most Dramatic Moments in Masters History
Over the years, the annual competition at the Augusta National Golf Club has produced some fantastic moments. For those who like a flutter, the Masters usually provides some great punting opportunities and the free bets from online bookies make it an even more exciting event for many. Below are my personal top five moments, with a short description of each one.
- Tiger Woods’ chip on the 16th hole in 2005. What became known as the best golf ball commercial ever, owing to the prominence of the Nike logo before the ball dropped into the hole, was a truly magnificent shot that had everybody on the edge of their seats. Pitched well above the hole, owing to the sloping green, it was Tiger Woods’ second shot on the par 3 16th at Augusta. After trickling down the slope, the ball paused for a moment on the lip of the hole, before dropping in to wild applause and high fives.
- In 2004, Augusta was the setting for Phil Mickelson’s first major tournament win. Tied for the lead with Ernie Els going into the 18th, a par 4, he played a great tee shot and an approach shot to put him 18 feet from the hole. A birdie would be enough to win by one shot and the assembled crowd held its breath as Phil took the putt. What made this moment even more dramatic was that Chris DiMarco had just missed a putt on the same line. The rest, as they say, is history. Mickelson sunk the putt and leaped for joy after finally winning a major tournament.
- 1975 was the first time that many Americans were able to watch the Masters on television in colour and they were treated to a great golfing display by Jack Nicklaus as he won his 5th Masters. The finish was exciting but the most dramatic moment was produced when Nicklaus birdied the 16th with a monster 40 foot putt.
- One of the most exciting finished to a Masters had less to do with the flawless golf played by Nick Faldo than the collapse of the Great White Shark, Greg Norman. Probably the best golfer never to win a major tournament, Norman had a 6-stroke lead going into the final round and looked a certainty to break his duck. However, after the first nine, his lead had narrowed to two strokes and a possible birdie putt on the 11th that grazed the hole seemed to accelerate his collapse as he missed the next shot and went into the 12th tied for the lead. Landing in the water on the 12th led to a double bogey and in the end he was lucky to hold on to second position as Faldo ran away with the title, winning by 5 shots.
- Jack Nicklaus appears on my list for a second time, and for this I make no apologies. Anybody who watched the 1986 Masters cannot fail to agree that it was an absolute classic and the fact that Nicklaus had been written off by the critics after 6 years without a major win made the moment even sweeter. Six birdies and an eagles on the last ten holes secured the title and for me, the most dramatic moment of all was his near hole-in-one on the 16th.
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