De Vicenzo and The Lost Masters

imageWith the Masters Victory of Argentine golfer Angel Cabrera, much discussion has turned to another superb golfer from that country, Roberto DeVicenzo, who has his own place in Masters history.

Now 85, Roberto DeVicenzo is one of the most successful golfers of all time. He won more than 230 tournaments worldwide in his career, including six PGA Tour events and the 1967 British Open (by way of comparison, Sam Snead won a total of 152 events worldwide).

But in the United States, DeVicenzo is perhaps best remembered for his scorecard miscue at the 1968 Masters.

In that tournament, DeVicenzo made a birdie on the par 4 seventeenth, but Tommy Aaron, his playing partner accidentally entered a 4 instead. DeVicenzo did not check the card before signing it, and under the rules of golf, the higher score had to be counted. If the correct score had been counted, DeVicenzo would have faced Bob Goaly in an 18 hole playoff the next day.

A meeting was held in Bobby Jones’ cabin, but in the end, there were no rules to fix the problem. If he had signed for a score lower than he earned, he would have been disqualified. By signing for one higher, he had to accept the score.

“I play golf all over the world for 30 years, and now all I can think of is what a stupid I am to be wrong in this wonderful tournament,” De Vicenzo said. “Never have I ever done such a thing.”

De Vicenzo was instrumental in the creation of the Champions Tour through his participation in the inaugural Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf, where he paired with Juilius Boros against Tommy Bolt and Art Wall. He won the that tournament twice, and also won the inaugural US Senior Open in 1980. He won the PGA Senior Championship in 1974.

His best finish in the US Open was a tie for eighth in 1958. He won the Open Championship in 1967, and tied for fifth at the PGA Championship in 1954. With his Open Championship, he was the oldest man to win that event.

De Vicenzo was elected to the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1989, and was given the Bob Jones Award in 1970.

DeVicenzo was born April 14, 1923 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He turned professional in 1938 at age 15, and retired in 2006 after a 68 year career.

You can watch DeVicenzo’s swing below:

 

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