SI Vault
 
The BIG 10
June 14, 2010
As all eyes focus on Pebble Beach and the 110th U.S. Open, a panel of SI Golf Group experts select the top 10 national championships of all time
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font
June 14, 2010

The Big 10

As all eyes focus on Pebble Beach and the 110th U.S. Open, a panel of SI Golf Group experts select the top 10 national championships of all time

View CoverRead All Articles

10

1971 Merion

Jack Nicklaus and Lee Trevino, the two best players at the time, finished regulation tied for the lead. On the 1st tee in the playoff Trevino remembered that his daughter had left a rubber snake in his bag, so he pulled it out and tossed it in Nicklaus's direction. Nicklaus chuckled, but Trevino had the last laugh. He shot a two-under 68 to beat Nicklaus by three shots. Over the next three weeks Trevino would add the Canadian and British Open trophies to his mantel.

9

2006 Winged Foot

Standing on the par-4 18th tee in the final round, Phil Mickelson led by one and was on the verge of winning his third consecutive major. But then he suffered one of the most ignominious meltdowns in Open history: a push-slice drive bounced off a corporate tent; a cut three-iron banged off the trunk of a tree and rolled back to his feet; another cut iron shot plugged in a greenside bunker. Mickelson made double bogey and finished a shot behind Geoff Ogilvy. "I am such an idiot," said Mickelson.

8

1999 Pinehurst

In the first U.S. Open at historic Pinehurst, Payne Stewart, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods staged an epic battle over the final nine holes. At the 445-yard par-4 18th, Stewart, leading Mickelson by one, laid up after driving into the right rough, then hit a nine-iron to 15 feet. Using a putting tip that his wife, Tracey, had given him on Saturday night, Stewart earned his second Open title by draining the par putt. Four months later Stewart would die in a plane crash. He was 42.

7

Continue Story
1 2 3 4