It kept Wayning the next day, with Grady taking a three-shot lead over Stephens. But it also Payned, with Stewart, in L.A. Raider black-and-white, just birdieing, baby, on his way to a 65, a course record until Norman undid it. Stewart eventually wrinkled on Sunday with a 74, but this guy has a second, a fourth, a seventh and an eighth in the British since 1985. If he ever says he's not coming over here, somebody sic Sheryl on him.
Meanwhile, running on the hard, brown beaches of the Ayrshire coast Sunday before his round, Calcavecchia, a new man with a new passion—La-maze coach—was beginning to look at golf in a new way. "I thought about what it would be like to win a major, what it would feel like," he said. "I decided to just go out and play, just let it happen."
While Calcavecchia was running, the Shark was in a feeding frenzy. As Norman teed off an hour in front of the leaders, his caddie, Bruce Edwards, said to him, "Let's play an Arnold Palmer round today." Norman takes direction well. His six consecutive birdies at the start of the round put him 11 under to tie Watson and trail Grady by one, and those two hadn't yet pierced Scottish soil with their first wooden tees of the day.
Norman did the unthinkable on 7—he parred it—then bogeyed the tiny 8th for the second time in the week. ("We never did lick that thing," moaned Edwards.) But he came back with birdies at 11, 12 and 16 and a chilling chip-in from 20 feet on 17 for a 31-33-64, 13 under for the tournament. "This is the greatest round I've ever played," Norman said afterward. "I never root against anyone, but right now, I'd like to see everyone else fall away."
Grady fell a little, but just enough to tie, needing four pars over the last four holes to win but getting only three, bogeying the 17th. What Norman didn't expect to see, as he lay on his hotel bed watching the rest of the tournament, was the chunky sharpshooter Calcavecchia standing on the 18th tee at 12 under. "Here's the one," he said to Edwards then. "We've got a bullet to dodge."
Calcavecchia had knocked it in from 50 feet on 11 to save par, then chipped in on the fly from 60 feet on 12 for a birdie. "I've always said, 'When it's your turn to win, you're going to win. You're picked,' " he said. Did somebody order a 3 to tie? At 18, Calcavecchia stepped up and clobbered his drive 304 yards, then hit an eight-iron within a flagstick of the flagstick and rolled it in effortlessly. And made his 3.
What followed was the first-ever four-hole playoff in the history of the majors. Under British Open rules they would play holes 1 and 2—probably the two easiest on the course—and end with the 17th and 18th, maybe the two toughest.
The people of Troon know history when they see it, and they leaned out of roadside manors, hung from scaffolding, and peered out between backward-facing grandstand seats to watch. What they saw was what they had seen all day—Greg Norman making birdies. He birdied the first hole while his two opponents made pars. Just Norman's luck. If this had been the Masters or the PGA, with their sudden-death playoffs, he would have been heading back to the presentation stand thinking up witticisms for his acceptance speech. When Larry Mize chips in from Mississippi at the Masters, it's over. But when Norman birdies the first hole of a playoff, what's the rule? Play three more, boys; then we'll decide.
Norman was on his way to still another birdie on the 391-yard 2nd when Calcavecchia did something crazy. He rolled in a 25-foot putt of his own for birdie. Norman was unblinking. He stepped up to his 20-footer, heard a radio announcer broadcasting live, stepped off to glare at him, stepped back up and drained it. Two holes, two under; 10 under in his last 20 holes. Calcavecchia said later that he thought to himself, "If he doesn't deserve to win it, then who does?" Grady made par.
At 17, the third hole of the playoff, Norman hit a three-iron so pure that Calcavecchia later said, "If there's such a thing as hitting a shot too perfect, Greg Norman did there." Even the crowd gasped—it narrowly missed the hole—but it bounced by the pin and carried barely off the green. Grady would bogey the hole out of a bunker, and Calcavecchia would two-putt for a par from 50 feet, but Norman would get just one more piece of buzzard's luck.