Some of Golf Monthly’s fondest Masters memories…
Jeremy Ellwood, GM associate editor, Ace-Fest 2004
What I remember most about my only visit to Augusta in 2004 was the number of holes-in-one going on all around me – more than any other Masters courtesy of Chris DiMarco on the 6th on Thursday, and then Padraig Harrington and Kirk Triplett in consecutive groups on the 16th on Sunday.
Add in Justin Rose’s on the 6th during practice that I almost witnessed (I couldn’t see it go in, only the ‘patron’ reaction) and KJ Choi’s holed 4-iron for eagle on the 11th on Sunday, which I was perfectly placed to see, and it really was a ‘holed shot’ bonanza.
Finally, Phil Mickelson’s late grandfather lending a ‘helping’ hand to a putt that seemed to be missing on the final hole rounded the whole magical experience off neatly.
Fergus Bisset, GM contributing editor, Woosie wins in 1991
As an 11-year-old I was never sure which of the sports I played to focus on, or which I liked best. By April 14 of 1991 I knew it was golf.
I watched the last round of the 1991 US Masters with my dad. I remember the feeling of nervous excitement as I monitored how late it was getting. But I wasn’t told to go to bed. Like me, dad was far too engrossed in the action.
Tom Watson made eagles at both the 13th and 15th to get right back into the frame and, coming to the last, three men were tied on 11-under-par: Woosnam, Watson and José María Olazábal.
The tension got to them all: Olly found sand twice, Watson drove into the trees and Woosie hoyed it miles left from the tee to avoid the fairway bunkers. But only Woosie managed to save par – rolling a six-footer home after he was forced to two-putt from the fringe – and in so doing, he dropped to one knee with his arm outstretched in one of the great iconic celebrations. I was hooked.
Alex Narey, GM assistant editor, Sandy’s bunker shot
Going to the Masters in 2009 was pretty special, and Faldo hauling back Norman in 1996 is also a personal favourite, but I’m plumping for the efforts of Sandy Lyle some 24 years ago.
Back in 1988, golf – as it is today – was just one of the sports I loved but I remember, like my colleague Fergus, sitting up with my dad (I was 12) and watching the final round of the Masters as Lyle teed off with a two-shot lead. At the time, the Scot was regarded as arguably the world’s best player, and his razor-sharp iron play was keeping all chasers at bay.
However, Lyle ran into trouble at Amen Corner, and as he wilted, a young Mark Calcavecchia made his move. Standing on the 18th tee needing a par to take it to a play-off, it seemed Lyle’s chance had gone when he ran his 1-iron into the first of the left fairway traps. But with a 7-iron in hand, he played the shot of his life, whipping the ball high and watching as it landed softly before it rolled back down the slope to ten feet.
Many people forget about the putt, which he holed to win his only Green Jacket, because the 7-iron from the bunker really was that good.
Neil Tappin GM deputy editor, Third-round madness – 2010
I have been lucky enough to attend the Masters on three occasions. The first two, won by Zach Johnson and Trevor Immelman, are largely remembered for their unusual lack of excitement. But it was a different story in 2010.
Lee Westwood had built a healthy lead half way through round three and I was watching the Englishman play his approach to the 11th green when from behind me came an earth-shuddering roar.
Phil Mickelson had just holed his approach to the 14th to register back-to-back eagles. The noise was like nothing I’d ever experienced before – from complete silence to ear-splitting euphoria. It was game on. This was an incredible Masters and the icing on the cake for me came when my name emerged from the press ballot to play Augusta the Monday after. A truly incredible experience.