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Author Archive for Andy Bull in Augusta

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Was Tiger Woods’s Masters win the greatest comeback in sporting history? | Andy Bull

Sport is not short of second comings after adversity – Ali in boxing, Seles in tennis, Lauda in F1, even Hogan in golf – but there is an extra dimension to Woods’sIn the spring of 2014 Tiger Woods was at work on the range around the back of his house, …

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Twenty years on, where is the legacy of Tiger Woods’ defining Masters triumph?

Tiger Woods’ 1997 win was supposed to open up golf to black players – but, on the eve of the 2017 tournament, little appears to have changed

The Sand Hill Grill is shut, and has been for a while. There is a sign in the window saying the building has been condemned, is unfit for inhabitation. But the mural is still there, on the rough brick wall. A black man in a white jumpsuit, bag slung over one shoulder, back turned. It is supposed to be Tommy Bennett, who they all called Burnt Biscuits because he once scalded his legs climbing over his grandmother’s stove, stealing away out the window with her cooking. Or so the story goes.

It was Bennett who carried Tiger Woods’s bag when he played his very first practice round at Augusta, in 1995. And it was Bennett who brought Woods down to the Sand Hill Grill that same year, because it was where he and all the other local caddies gathered when the working day was done.

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Tom Watson leaves his final Masters with trademark dignity to much acclaim

Twice winner of the Masters, the American, who still enjoys the thrill of being in the hunt, fell just short in being able to say farewell to Augusta on Sunday

Late on Friday afternoon, Tom Watson made the long walk up the hill to Augusta’s 18th green for the 134th and final time in a Masters. Among the many people gathered to welcome him he would have recognised Johnny Paulk, who has been working as an announcer here almost as long as Watson has been playing the course. It is Paulk’s job to give the crowd a short introduction to each of the players coming on to the green. Watson does not need one and his list of achievements is so long that he had arrived on the edge long before Paulk had finished talking, so his words were drowned out by the adoring applause. Watson clapped back, thanking the fans for all for their support, beat his fist against his heart to show how much it meant, then strolled on to set himself for his final couple of putts.

Watson’s approach shot had gone long, way up to the back of the plateau beyond the pin. He was 66ft away from the hole, but barely tapped the ball. It rolled around to the left, up on to the slope in front of the bunker, and curled around towards the hole. For a moment it looked like it might slide in, but it ambled to a stop 10in or so short. The crowd sighed and Watson dropped his putter and spread his arms wide, as if to say “I tried”.

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