Golf World Magazine has done it again. A little over a month since an editor at the publication made six mistakes in a less than 500 word story, the publication has committed another boner.
What's wrong about the screen image to the left? Tom Watson didn't win his first major at the 1977 Masters but the 1975 British Open! Watson defeating Jack Newton in a playoff.
Sunday’s play-off began with Watson gaining an early two shot lead, but Newton quickly pulled even and went in front at the 12th. Watson responded with an eagle at the 14th and regained his lead. At the 18th, the two again stood level. Watson was on the green in two whilst Newton put his second shot into a bunker on the left. He played out past the pin. Watson made no errors in getting down in two putts, leaving Newton a down hill putt of around ten feet. He struck it smoothly but it just slid past the left hand side of the hole. Tom Watson had won his first Open Championship.How embarrassing can it be to forget a major championship victory? Just the latest example of how bad the Golf MSM is.
Golf World's headline for the Nick Seitz story is off. Then Seitz's article has problems too.
The other critical par was on the par-3 16th, where a past experience with Nicklaus ironically was an influence. Watson had played with Nicklaus in '75 as a Masters rookie when Nicklaus was winning his fifth green jacket. Watson hit it in the water twice and made a 7. He watched how Nicklaus made a 2, and practiced extra thoughtfully on the hole the following two years.1- Watson was not a Masters rookie in 1975. He played in the 1970 Masters as an amateur. Yes and that does count.
"Standing on the tee in '77, it was either a 5-iron or 6-iron," he says, "so I took a 5-iron and hit a three-quarter shot as flush as I could hit it, right at the hole, never wavering off the flag, to the back of the green. As soon as I hit that shot, the nervousness I had felt the entire round was just flushed out of my body. I was calm as could be coming in. It was a crucial shot and I made it."
A shaky moment had to be overcome on the 72nd green, however. "I thought 'OK, Jack bogeyed and all I have to do is three-putt to win.' I was thinking the way most weekend golfers would think. Then I told myself 'Don't think that way!' I played the proper putt, left it close, tapped it in for a 4."
Nicklaus shot 66 and lost. A magnificent rivalry was born.
Today Watson calls it a watershed victory. "It proved I could win against the big boys," he says. Nicklaus being the biggest of all.
2- Tom seems to be forgetting his 1975 British Open, or more likely Seitz is putting words in his mouth. Jack Newton, whose golf career was abbreviated because of a terrible accident, was no world beater. However finishing one shot of playoff in 1975 were both Jack Nicklaus the greatest golfer ever or at least before Tiger Woods, and Johnny Miller who finished #1 on the money list in 1974 and #2 in 1975. Miller and Nicklaus were both in contention before the day started, Miller actually bogied 18 or he would have been in the playoff too. If that's not beating the big boys, I don't know what is.
Nostalgia is great, but only if the story being told holds up to the facts. Seitz fails miserably at doing that simple task.
Besides, what's with a Masters' preview over a week before the tournament starts? Is Golf World forgetting there is a Golf Major Championship being played this week or do they just not care?
Linked to- Basil, Third World County,