MASTERS '20: A look back at Masters from 5 to 75 years ago

·4 min read

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) -- A look at some of the anniversaries this year at the Masters:

75 years ago (1945):

This turned out to be the final year without the Masters. Byron Nelson had defeated Ben Hogan in a playoff in 1942, and then World War II intervened. The Masters was not played for three years, during which cattle occupied the grounds of Augusta National. A month after the Masters would have been played, Nazi Germany surrendered. Japan surrendered three months later. The Masters would resume in 1946.

50 years ago (1970)

A two-time U.S. Open champion, Billy Casper won his only Masters by beating Gene Littler in a playoff between two of San Diego's finest players. Casper led by one going into the final round and shot 71. Littler caught him with a 70, and they faced an 18-hole playoff on Monday. It was no contest. Casper was four shots ahead after four holes and led by as many as seven. He shot 69 to Littler's 74. Gary Player bogeyed the 18th hole in regulation for a 70 and finished one shot out of the playoff. It was the last Masters playoff decided over 18 holes. Augusta National went to a sudden-death format in 1976, and it was first used in 1979.

25 years ago (1995)

Few other Masters have felt more spiritual than Ben Crenshaw slipping on the green jacket just five days after serving as pallbearer for longtime coach Harvey Penick. Crenshaw says he took one final lesson from Penick, who told him to not let the putter get past his hands during his stroke. Crenshaw was tied for 54-hole lead with Brian Henninger, a dozen players within four of the lead. He would say later it was as if someone had put his hand on his shoulder and guided him through. He took the lead with a 6-iron to 3 feet for birdie on the 16th. He made a 12-footer for birdie on the 17th. And when his bogey putt dropped on the 18th for a 68 and a one-shot win over Davis Love III, Crenshaw doubled over and covered his face as he sobbed.

20 years ago (2000)

Vijay Singh held off challenges from Tiger Woods, David Duval and Ernie Els to win his second major, raising his profile as the man from Fiji who toiled long hours in remote places to become Masters champion. Singh took a three-shot lead into the final round. Woods, who started the weekend nine shots behind, closed within three shots on Sunday until playing the back nine in even par. Duval, in the mix on Sunday for the third straight year at Augusta, was within one shot when his second to the par-5 13th bounced into the creek, leading to bogey. Els had three birdie chances at the end and missed them all. Singh closed with a 3-under 69 for a three-shot victory over Els.

10 years ago (2010)

A week that began with Tiger Woods returning to golf from serial adultery ended with Phil Mickelson capturing his third green jacket and embracing his wife, at a tournament for the first time since being diagnosed with cancer. Woods had not played since revelations began in November of multiple marital affairs. Woods broke par all four rounds but was never closer than three shots on Sunday and tied for fourth, five shots behind. Mickelson trailed Lee Westwood by one shot going into the final round. He had two par saves from the trees around the turn, and his most famous shot was a 6-iron from the pine straw through a pair of trees on the 13th to 4 feet that set up birdie. He closed with a 67 for a three-shot victory over Westwood.

5 years ago (2015)

One year after Jordan Spieth lost a bid to become the youngest Masters champion, the 21-year-old Texan turned in one of the most dominant wins at Augusta. He went wire-to-wire and never let anyone closer than three shots of the lead after Thursday -- only one other Masters champion, Craig Wood in 1941, had done that. Spieth set the 36-hole record (130), the 54-hole record (200) and tied the 72-hole record set by Tiger Woods in 1997 at 18-under 270. Spieth became the first player to reach 19 under at any point and had to settle for a 70 in the final round for a four-shot victory over Justin Rose and Phil Mickelson. Rory McIlroy, with his first chance to complete the career Grand Slam, finished fourth.