Watch the complete final round broadcast of the 1978 Masters as Gary Player rallies from seven strokes behind to win his third Masters by one stroke over Tom Watson, Hubert Green, and Rod Funseth.
The year was 1978, and the golf world was in for a treat at the 42nd Masters Tournament held at the renowned Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia.
This prestigious event witnessed a stunning comeback by the legendary Gary Player, who overcame a significant deficit to secure his third Masters title and ninth major championship at the age of 42.
The Final Round Heroics
Gary Player’s journey to victory in the 1978 Masters was nothing short of spectacular.
Starting the final round tied for tenth place, Player was seven shots behind the leader, Hubert Green, who was the reigning U.S. Open champion.
With the Augusta heat resembling a summer’s day, Player embarked on an unforgettable back-nine performance.
In a display of extraordinary skill and composure, Player shot a stunning 30 on the back nine.
He executed a series of breathtaking putts, ranging from 10 to 30 feet, with his final birdie putt at the 18th hole measuring 15 feet.
These incredible moments on the greens paved the way for Player’s victory.
Waiting for Greatness
After completing his round and taking the lead in the clubhouse, Gary Player had to endure a nerve-wracking wait of forty minutes.
He watched anxiously as the final groups battled it out on the course, knowing that his destiny hung in the balance.
The Close Contenders
Player’s rivals were no pushovers.
Rod Funseth, another contender, showcased his prowess with five birdies during the round. However, his chances were thwarted by two unfortunate three-putts and a string of pars on the final three holes.
Defending champion Tom Watson, a golfing legend in his own right, put on an impressive show with an eagle on the 13th hole and birdies on both the 15th and 16th holes. Yet, his missed 8-foot par putt on the final hole would prove costly.
Hubert Green, the 54-hole leader and U.S. Open champion, battled until the very end.
Despite a bogey at the 16th hole, he managed to land an outstanding approach shot on the 18th hole, setting up a three-foot birdie putt that could have tied the match.
However, an unfortunate distraction from a radio announcer in the crowd led to a missed opportunity, and Green’s hopes were dashed.
Gary Player’s victory at the 1978 Masters Tournament was historic in many ways.
He became the oldest winner of the Masters, breaking a record that had stood for nearly a quarter of a century.
The previous record-holder, Sam Snead, had won his third green jacket at the age of 41 in 1954.
Player held this distinction for eight years until Jack Nicklaus won his sixth Masters at the age of 46 in 1986.