Throwback Thursday: That chip at 16

The Scoop

We’ve all seen it, we’ve all heard it, and we all get goosebumps every time it’s replayed. NCG looks back at Tiger Woods’s chip-in on the 16th at the 2005 Masters – arguably the most famous shot in golf history

The Background

Sunday April 10, 2005. Tiger Woods and Chris DiMarco were going head-to-head on the back-nine of Augusta National. The pair were way ahead of everyone else, but DiMarco was making a charge to try and stop Tiger from claiming his fourth Green Jacket.

Going into the final round, Woods started with a three-stroke lead, and slowly but surely, DiMarco started to chip away at the deficit.

After back-to-back birdies at 14 and 15, DiMarco stood on the famous 16th tee just one-shot behind Woods.

The Scene

Tiger pulled his eight-iron left and long of the green. DiMarco had already played his shot safely into the middle of the green – with Tiger facing a difficult chip, was this the point when, finally, the two would be level?

The pin was tucked away in that classic Sunday spot; the only possible way for Tiger to get it close would be to use the slope and allow the ball the trickle down to the hole.

But there were so many variables. The line needed to be perfect. The pace needed to be perfect. Tiger needed to find the apex of the slope to even get the ball inside of DiMarco’s ball.

So off he went, stalking almost every inch of the green to work out how to execute the shot. He then settled over the ball, switching his attention from the slope to the hole, and again, and again.

An eerie silence then settled over Augusta, almost in anticipation of an other-worldly shot. With a sharp descending blow, the ball reached the top of the slope, before gently rolling down towards the hole. It was the perfect line, but was the pace right? It reached the very edge of the hole, and paused, with the Nike logo perfectly positioned, for what seemed like an eternity.

And then it dropped.

The Legacy

What most people don’t remember is Tiger finished the round bogey-bogey and had to playoff with DiMarco, which Woods won on the first extra hole with a birdie on the 18th.

But the most memorable shot of that year’s Masters was by far the chip at 16. It would go on to become arguably the most famous golf shot in history. It was even used as an advert for Nike.

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