The Masters Tournament takes centre stage this week with the first Major Championship of 2019 welcoming 87 players to Augusta National. Of those teeing it up in Georgia, five players are Staysure Tour members who share seven Green Jackets between them.
Bernhard Langer – 1985 and 1993
Bernhard Langer was the first German and second European to win the Masters when he triumphed in 1985. Spaniard Seve Ballesteros was the first European to don the Green Jacket when he succeeded in 1980 and 1983, while Langer’s two stroke victory over the two-time Champion, Raymond Floyd and Curtis Strange saw him become the inaugural German to win a Major Championship.
“It means a lot to me because I always wanted to win a Major tournament,” Langer said following his victory. “I expected to win a Major in the next three years and I’m so happy that it’s happened right now.
“Now I’ve won the Masters once I’m sure I can do it again.” The German did exactly that eight years later.
A dominating performance at Augusta National saw the then-35-year-old claim a four shot victory and put his name in the history books as a two-time Masters Champion.
This year he will make his 36th appearance at the Masters, looking to transfer his scintillating form from the over-50s circuit to the lush green fairways in Georgia, where he took a share of 38th place last season after finishing tied eighth four years earlier.
Sandy Lyle – 1988
Sandy Lyle became the first British golfer to win the Masters in 1988, starting the dominance of British success for four consecutive years. The Scotsman held off the challenge from Mark Calcavecchia to record a one-shot victory, making birdie on the 72nd hole following one of the most iconic shots in Masters history.
From the 18th tee, Lyle found himself in the fairway bunker with 145 yards to the pin but hit a stunning seven iron to within eight foot, holing the ensuing putt to clinch his debut Major title.
He will be the oldest competitor in the field this week and also has the honour of being the player with the most appearances at Augusta. He has played every year since 1985 and will make his 38th appearance this week.
Ian Woosnam – 1991
Following Lyle’s success four seasons prior and Nick Faldo’s back-to-back victories, Ian Woosnam became the fourth successive player from the British Isles to don the Green Jacket. He remains the only Welshman to have won the Masters after his one-stroke victory from José María Olazábal, however, it was not long before the Spaniard tasted success in Georgia.
José María Olazábal – 1994 and 1999
Olazábal clinched his moment in the Augusta sunlight three years after finishing second to Woosnam. The Spaniard kept American Tom Lehman at bay to record a two-stroke victory following a memorable eagle on the par five 15th hole. After finding the green in two, he rolled in a 35-foot putt for eagle to give him a two-shot lead which helped seal his first Green Jacket 25 years ago.
This year’s Masters will be the 20th anniversary of the Spaniard’s second win at Augusta after he followed in the footsteps of close friend Ballesteros, who was the first European and Spaniard to claim two Green Jackets.
Just five years after slipping into his first Green Jacket, Olazábal was donning his second having held the lead since the end of round two in 1999. His six under par second round set the tone for his victory, recording rounds of 70-66-73-71 for another two-stroke triumph in Georgia.
Vijay Singh – 2000
Vijay Singh clinched his second Major title at the Masters in 2000 following a three-shot victory over Ernie Els. The Fijian held a three-stroke lead with 18 holes to play and maintained that advantage during the final day, holing a birdie putt on the 72nd hole to be crowned Masters Champion.
Singh was the first and only Masters winner to hail from Oceania before Australia’s Adam Scott joined the three-time Major Champion in 2013 following his victory.