Two minutes later our phone rang. Armour picked it up and said, "Hello, you old has-been. There's a friend of mine here from Scotland I want you to meet. Walter Hagen—John Gonella." And he handed me the phone. I can't remember the details of the conversation, except that Hagen asked me to challenge Armour on his behalf for $1,000, or any multiple thereof. When I relayed this challenge, Tommy laughed and snorted, "Can't hit his hat, never could, as far as I'm concerned." But I sensed the deep affection and respect that he felt for his old friend and rival.
On the 1st hole of that fifth round I was given a wonderful example of Armour's knowledge and mastery of the game. I had hit my second shot to the green the only way I knew how—with a right-to-left draw. The ball came to rest about 15 feet to the right of the stick. Tommy must have sensed that I felt pretty satisfied with the shot, because he walked over to me and said, "Why the hell do you play dumb shots?" Startled, I replied, "What's so dumb about a shot that gives me a fair chance at a three?"
"Is there a sand trap on the left of the green?"
"Is there a sand trap at the front of the green?"
"Is there a sand trap on the right of the green?"
"That's why you played a dumb shot. Watch."
He dropped three balls on the fairway. The first one, which he hit left-to-right, landed three-quarters of the way up an embankment in front of the green and bounced on. The second one he hit dead straight at the flag. It, too, fell short and ran up on the green about six feet from the hole. The third ball he hit with a right-to-left draw on the same line that I had hit mine. Only, he hit it a fraction fat. That ball also hit three-quarters of the way up the embankment—except that in this case, the embankment was a sand trap.