Blast from the past: Gary Player rolls back the clock to win US ...


Blast from the past: Gary Player rolls back the clock to win US Masters

Sports reporter

Today in SA sports history: April 9

1957 — Boxer Ewart Potgieter, the giant farmer who stood 2.18m tall (7ft 2in), is easily outpointed over 10 rounds by John Holman in Portland, US. Potgieter outweighed the American by 55kg and was taller by 27cm, but he hardly landed a punch. Holman stuck close to Potgieter, attacking the body with such ferocity that by the eighth round the visitor’s stomach and sides were covered in red welts. Potgieter was suspended by American boxing on medical grounds after that fight and he never fought again, retiring with a record of 11 wins, all inside the distance, two losses and a draw. Chicago-based Holman was a useful fighter, boasting a win over former world heavyweight champion Ezzard Charles.

1978 — Gary Player, at the age of 42, stages a spectacular comeback to win his third US Masters crown. Seven shots behind third-round leader Hubert Green, Player fired an eight-under-par 64 to clinch a one-stroke victory. He was on fire on the back nine, carding 30 as he nailed a series of tricky putts, including one of more than 4m on the 18th for birdie. Player, with an 11-under-par 278, had to wait for the groups behind him to finish, but in the end he was one shot better than US Open champion Green, defending champion Tom Watson and Rod Funseth. Player pocketed $45,000 (R654,000) for this triumph, the last of his nine Major titles...

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