5 of the Greatest Underdogs to Compete in the Master’s Tournament
Perhaps considered one of the most monumental tournaments in any golfer’s life, the U.S. Masters Tournament is the one place where you want to showcase your talents and prove your potential and worth as a player. Crowned as one of the four major championships in the world for professional golf players, its prestige is unmatched. It is hosted at the same location every year; the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.
Now, you may be used to rooting for the usual favorites such as Tiger Woods, amongst others, when it comes down to it, and they’ve definitely earned their spots as world champions for good reason! However, the next time you’re looking for someone to root for when thinking about your US Masters betting options, you might want to watch the underdogs in the tournament. The surprise element makes the win all the more satisfying! To take a look back in history, here are some of the greatest underdogs that competed in the Master’s Tournament to date.
- Trevor Immelman
Perhaps best described as a ‘one hit wonder’, Immelman really took everyone by surprise by winning his first and only major title, and doing so against the iconic Tiger Woods in 2008 by three strokes. Immelman wasn’t someone who was thought to have taken an ‘easy’ win by any means.
Leading up to the 2008 Masters Tournament, Immelman underwent surgery to have a noncancerous tumor removed that was located on his diaphragm. After such a major surgery, cancerous or not, nobody expected the man who had ranked 1673rd in the world to take the title!
- Todd Hamilton
Another completely unexpected win came from Todd Hamiton in 2004. He first entered professional golf in 1987; however, he was not able to make the PGA. Instead, Hamilton began to make his name on an international level instead, making it onto the Japan Golf Tour, a detour no one really expected or took much notice of to begin with. After 12 seasons, he finally left and returned to qualifying school in 2003.
Showcasing resilience at its finest, it took Hamilton a total of eight tries and reaching the age of 38 before he finally cleared the entrance in 2003, and then was able to secure his sudden win in 2004!
- Jack Nicklaus
Winning the Masters Tournament wasn’t what was surprising for Jack Nicklaus. The thing that did come as a shock to everyone was that he could take home another green jacket! Players are happy just to take one, and here was Nicklaus, at the age of 46, taking home a second green jacket.
Considering Nicklaus hadn’t won since 1980, no one was expecting anything too big from him in the 1986 Masters. But an eagle putt on 15, a 16 and 17 birdie, and a parr on 18 gave him his sixth Masters win, an amazing end to any career!
- Herman Keiser
Although Keiser had previously won five PGA tournaments, a Masters win wasn’t something anyone was particularly looking forward to from him, and perhaps neither was he! Yet, 1946 was his year, earning him his only Major win!
Keiser made his name unforgettable in the golfing world in the 1946 tournament, taking the lead ahead of Ben Hogan on the third hole by a single stroke, earning $2,500 in prize money!
- Charles Coody
The 1971 tournament was the year for Charles Coody, who could finally claim a green jacket. He had previously won two PGA tournaments and was also known to be one of the best iron players of his time. It seems golf runs in the family blood, with Charles’ grandson now competing in the PGA tournament.
At the 1971 Masters, he opened with a three-shot lead, but it was thought he would lose against Jack Nicklaus after the first round. Nicklaus’s chances were looking better than Coody thanks to his PGA win just a few months before the Masters, so all eyes were on Nicklaus.
However, that day simply was favorable for Coody, who birdied the 15th and 16th holes to get ahead of Johnny Miller, and Nicklaus could only tie with Coody at best.