Career Slam: Gene Sarazen
The 'shot heard 'round the world' at Augusta National sealed his place as the first career Grand Slam member
April 07, 2015
By PGATOUR.COM staff,
It's one of the most famous shots in golf -- Gene Sarazen's albatross on the 15th hole in the final round of the 1935 Masters. In just the second year of the tournament, Sarazen became a legend -- and in the process, became the first member of the modern-day career Grand Slam club.
SARAZEN GRAND SLAM FACTS
Order of career Grand Slam: 1922 U.S. Open, 1922 PGA Championship, 1932 Open Championship, 1935 Masters
Age when completing the career Grand Slam: 32
Total majors won: 7
Total majors played: 112
Major starts needed to win the career Grand Slam: 36
Starts needed to win the final leg: Won Masters on his first attempt. Sarazen did not play in the inaugural Masters in 1934; in fact, the tournament was called the Augusta National Invitational at the time. The win in Georgia was the last major victory of his career.
Closest to single-season Grand Slam: Considering the inaugural Masters wasn't played until 1934 -- 14 years after Sarazen turned pro -- his chances for a professional single-season Grand Slam were few. Just two times in his career did he play all four majors in a single season -- 1936, when he posted top 10s at the Masters and The Open; and 1937, with his lone top 10 at the U.S. Open. In actuality, for most of Sarazen's competitive years, the Grand Slam consisted of the U.S. and Open championships, and the U.S. and British amateurs (which Bobby Jones achieved in 1930).
OTHER CAREER GRAND SLAM MEMBERS
GENE SARAZEN: MAJOR VICTORIES
1922 U.S OPEN - At Skokie, the 20-year-old Sarazen shot a brilliant 2-under 68 to rally in the final round and finish 8 over for the tournament, beating John Black and amateur Bobby Jones by a stroke.
1922 PGA CHAMPIONSHIP - At Oakmont, Sarazen became the first player to win the U.S. Open and PGA in the same year. Using a match-play format, Sarazen won six matches, beating Bobby Cruickshank 3&2 in the semifinals and Emmet French 4&3 in the finals.
1923 PGA CHAMPIONSHIP - At Pelham, Sarazen kept his match-play winning streak alive, as he successfully defended his title in a grueling 38-hole final against Walter Hagen. Sarazen's recovery shot from a marsh on the final hole was the key shot.
1932 THE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP - At Prince's Golf Club, Sarazen handily won his only Open Championship, going wire-to-wire to win by five strokes over Macdonald Smith. The tournament was played two weeks before the U.S. Open.
1932 U.S. OPEN - At Fresh Meadow, Sarazen started the final round a shot off the lead, but just as he did 10 years earlier, he was unbeatable on Sunday. His final-round 66 left him at 6 over, three shots better than Bobby Cruickshank and Phillip Perkins.
1933 PGA CHAMPIONSHIP - At Blue Mound, Sarazen rolled through the field, beating Willie Goggin 5&4 in the finals to secure his third PGA title.
1935 MASTERS - At Augusta National, Sarazen was three shots behind going into the 15th hole in the final round. But his albatross drew him even with Craig Wood, eventually forcing a 36-hole playoff. Sarazen beat Wood by five strokes that Monday.
|GENE SARAZEN: ALL-TIME MAJORS RESULTS|
|Year||Masters||U.S. Open||The Open||PGA|
|GENE SARAZEN: MAJORS AT A GLANCE|
|Major||Starts (Made cuts)||Wins||2nd||Top 10|
|U.S. OPEN||33 (26)||2||2||17|
|OPEN CHAMP.||17 (11)||1||1||10|
|PGA||31 (NA)||3||1||18 (R16)|
MORE ON GENE SARAZEN
Essential Gene Sarazen