Failed to sparkle in 2005 but remains exempt until July thanks to his victory in the 2004 Ryder Cup Wales Seniors Open, when he made an incredible 45 foot birdie putt on the final hole to capture the title. Finished ninth on the 2004 Order of Merit, his highest placing since joining the Tour in 1999. Won for the first time on the Seniors Tour when he claimed the 2002 Travis Perkins Senior Masters at Wentworth Club and, seven months later, he won the Digicel Jamaica Classic, in association with Sony Ericsson. The eldest of 15 children, he became hooked on the game while watching Sam Snead and Roberto de Vicenzo on television in 1957 but for the next three years had no access to a golf course and had to be content with knocking a ball around his neighbourhood. His first hickory clubs cost 30 cents each and he paid for them out of the money he earned doing a paper round. Learned the basics of the game by reading instruction articles in golf magazines but became good enough to play on the US PGA Tour for two years in the early 1970s. He also played on The European Tour on an occasional basis but it was on the mini-tours in the States where he enjoyed most of his success, winning more than 100 events before turning 50 in 1997. Lists one of his hobbies as languages and for a while he taught Spanish at San Diego State University.