Emotions high at ceremonial tee shots

2016 04 Getty Images 5195663061
• Palmer sits out hitting opening tee shot
• Player described it as "very special moment"
• Masters Tournament now underway

THE MASTERS | Ceremonial Tee-Shots

“It was more about Arnold this morning than anything else.”


Jack Nicklaus knew there was something particularly special about this year’s ceremonial tee shot at Augusta National. Traditionally, Nicklaus, Gary Player and Arnold Palmer have opened the Masters Tournament by driving off the first tee - but this year one of the ‘Big Three’ didn’t feel ready for it.

Palmer, now 86 years of age, was asked midweek by Nicklaus at the Champions Dinner if he wanted to hit his tee shot. “I don’t care if you putt it off the tee,” Nicklaus said to him. “I think everybody would love to have you do anything.”

“Let me think about it,” Palmer replied.

This morning, Nicklaus said the King didn’t want to step up. “I’m good,” Palmer told him.

Nicklaus later added: “I think probably the right thing. Arnold’s balance is not good and that’s what they were worried about. But I think he was delighted to be out there. I think we were delighted to have him there. Both Gary and I felt it was more about Arnold this morning than anything else, and I think that was just fine.”




Player said he dedicated his opening tee shot to Palmer and described it as a “very special moment”. “It was quite remarkable,” added the South African.

Emotions were high in the crowd when Palmer, looking frail, was helped onto the first tee amid applause from the Augusta patrons. One Augusta National member wiped tears from his eyes, whilst a number of patrons spoke about the emotion of the moment. “Well that was somethin’” said one. “I’m glad I got to see that.”

Share this Article

share-logo
twitter-logo facebook-logo

Latest Videos See all videos right arrow

play button
A ROUND WITH MARC WARREN (Epic Mission EP 6)
Epic Mission
play button
Motocaddy S1 & Pro-Series REVIEW & GIVEAWAY
Motocaddy
play button
MASTER YOUR SHORT GAME (Epic Mission EP 5)
Epic Mission
play button
REVIEWED! TAYLORMADE 2019 P790 IRONS!
TaylorMade
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

Former Open champ splits with long-time caddie
Marcel Siem loses tour card after rules blunder
Pro hit with FIFTY-EIGHT penalty shots for rule breach
Brooks Koepka: I don't view Rory as a rival
“Why I got a TaylorMade ball tattooed on my arm”

Other Top Stories

Tiger Woods puts new irons in the bag
New Fife golf course gets go ahead
REVIEW - Adare Manor, Ireland's rejuvenated masterpiece
Win a spot in the ASI Scottish Open Pro-Am with Hilton
Padraig Harrington targets 2020 Ryder Cup captaincy

Quick Fault 'n' Fixes See all videos right arrow

play button
Posture and set-up tips from Denis Pugh
Watch
play button
The correct ball position
Watch
play button
How to transition your weight with Peter Barber
Callaway
play button
How to stop topping the ball
Watch
See all videos right arrow