Home Entertainment The Breathtaking Shots of the P.G.A. Champion Gary Player

The Breathtaking Shots of the P.G.A. Champion Gary Player


Gary Player of South Africa, a nine-time major winner, captured the P.G.A. Championship in 1962 and 1972 and made an impressive run for a third crown in 1984 at age 48, finishing second to Lee Trevino.

In 1972, at Oakland Hills Country Club outside Detroit, Player rebounded from bogeys at 14 and 15 to pull off one of the more memorable shots in tournament history: a 9-iron approach on No. 16 from about 150 yards that went over trees and a lake to within about four feet of the pin. He converted the birdie putt and went on to prevail by two strokes.

With this year’s event beginning on Thursday at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky., Player, 88, recently reflected on what the P.G.A. meant to him.

The following conversation has been edited and condensed.

Was the shot at 16 the greatest one you ever hit?

No. The greatest shot I ever hit was in the [1968] British Open [at Carnoustie in Scotland.] The wind’s blowing like crazy and I’m playing with Jack Nicklaus. I take the 3-wood [on No. 14] and hit it inches from the hole.

Another one was the second shot on 17 in the 1974 Masters?

My caddie said to me when I arrived [at the ball], “I need a roof on my house.” I said, “We’re going to get you a roof this week.” As I hit the 9-iron, I just took the club and gently tossed it towards that bag and said, “We’re not even going to need a putter.” It was inches behind the hole.

What do you remember about the 1962 P.G.A. at the Aronimink Golf Club in Philadelphia?

Bob Goalby and I had a great battle down to the end. They made me an honorary member and I go to Philly for a month every year and play a lot with the members.

The 1984 P.G.A. Championship would have been a heck of a win for you?

Yeah, that would have been. At that stage, Julius Boros [also 48] was the oldest man to win a major and still was until Phil Mickelson [at age 50 in the 2021 P.G.A.].

Do you feel the P.G.A. gets enough respect among the four majors?

I rate the British Open No. 1, the United States Open No. 2, the P.G.A. No. 3 and the Masters No. 4.

You rate the P.G.A. over the Masters?

Yes, I do.

A lot of people consider the P.G.A. the least important major. Why do they believe that?

I don’t know why. First of all, it’s the toughest field of any field in golf. That’s pretty significant, if you beat the best field in golf. Also, I’m a professional golfer. The P.G.A. of America fulfilled my dream. Not only mine, but everybody that plays.

What do you think of the current run of Scottie Scheffler, who has won four tournaments since early March, including the Masters?

Fantastic. He’s a very nice man. He’s got a perfect golf swing. He gets all his weight going to the left side and that is the most important thing. He does that better than others.

Do you think the game is better off when there is a dominant player?

What happens when you have people dominating is you get tremendous coverage. If you look at the coverage that Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and I got for the tour, it’s unbelievable. Not only here but worldwide. You will always have somebody come along and dominate, and I think that’s very important.

When you play with friends, do you love the game as much as ever?

People say to me, “How much do you play?” I say, “Four to five times a week.” And if that doesn’t tell you how much I love it, then I don’t know. I love going out with my friends. I love playing with juniors. I could play every day.

What’s your game like these days?

I average par. I’ve beaten my age thousands of times. Trevino says to me, “What’s so good about that? You [can] shoot 16 over par to beat your age. When you get to 100 and you beat your age, then I’ll praise you.”

Source link

Previous articleNicole Scherzinger Calls Her Time in the Pussycat Dolls “Difficult”
Next articleLululemon’s Hot July 4th Finds Start at Just $9: These Will Sell Out


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here