Flash(j)ack: 20-year anniversary of Jack’s 1986 Masters victory

mulligan, 05 April 2006, Comments Off on Flash(j)ack: 20-year anniversary of Jack’s 1986 Masters victory
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Hard to believe it was twenty years ago when Jack Nicklaus made his last amazing run at the 1986 Masters. It feels like it was just yesterday. The Sunday round was one of the most magical displays of a champion golfer “in the zone,” but that was one of Jack’s signature “Sunday charges.” On his website, Jack reminisces about the 1986 victory:

Knowing he needed to make a run, Nicklaus began his charge with a birdie from 11 feet at nine then twisted in a pair of 25-footers at 10 and 11. Though he bogeyed the 12th, he offset the error with another birdie at 13. But he was merely treading water, and his hopes for winning a 20th major rested on the 15th hole, something that had rattled in the back of his mind all day.

A mighty drive of 298 yards – this when metal heads and balata balls were still in vogue – left him 202 yards to the green and presented him with a make-or-break proposition. He turned to Jackie, who was caddying in his first Masters for his father, and asked him, “How far do you think a three would go here?” Jackie’s response:

“Let’s see it.” When his 4-iron settled 12 feet from the hole, recognition kicked in. The gallery recognized that without a doubt that they were again watching the Nicklaus who had won 17 professional majors and 72 PGA Tour titles. Nicklaus recognized opportunity as well as a familiar feeling. Cheers and applause shook the grounds Jack cut his four-shot deficit in half when he converted the eagle. “I’ve never heard that noise level, not even at a concert. I remember my ears were just ringing,” Jackie says. (More here.)


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