Sunday, May 24, 2015

A Grand Slam for Down Under

Australian golfers can now claim a Grand Slam

A Grand Slam for Down Under

In April, Adam Scott became the first Australian to win The Masters, the last of the four majors to be claimed by an Aussie.

It was at Merion Golf Course in 1981 that David Graham became the first Australian to win the U.S. Open, an event since captured by countrymate Geoff Ogilvy. Graham remains the only Aussie to win two different majors.

Scott (currently ranked No. 3 in the world) will be joined by eight other Australians in Ardmore this weekend (world ranking in parentheses): Jason Day (26), Marc Leishman (61), John Senden (69), Marcus Fraser (74), Ogilvy (78), Aaron Baddeley (137), Mathew Goggin (380) and Alistair Presnell (395).

By the way, three of those Aussies — Leishman, Senden, Fraser — will play as a threesome Thursday and Friday (or whenever they get to actually play the first two rounds). They are scheduled to tee off from the 11th hole at 1:07 p.m. Thursday and from the first hole at 7:07 a.m. Friday.

Here is a chronological look at Australians that have won each of golf's four majors (first Aussie winner of each in bold):

 Year     Winner    Year     Winner
 1947  Jim Ferrier    1954  Peter Thomson
 1979  David Graham    1955  Peter Thomson
 1990  Wayne Grady    1956  Peter Thomson
 1995  Steve Elkington       1958  Peter Thomson   
       1960  Kel Nagle
 U.S. OPEN    1965  Peter Thomson
 1981  David Graham    1986  Greg Norman
 2006  Geoff Ogilvy    1991  Ian Baker-Finch
       1993  Greg Norman
 2013  Adam Scott      
About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

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Bob Vetrone Jr.
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