PGA Tour
PGA - The Masters Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, April 9th through Sunday, April 12th
SITE: Augusta National Golf Club, Augusta, Georgia
COURSE ARCHITECT: Alister MacKenzie, Bobby Jones (1934)
         Re-design work: George Cobb, Joe Finger, Tom Fazio, Jack Nicklaus,
         Robert Trent Jones
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,435
Hole-by-Hole1 - Par 4 445 Yds (Tea Olive)
2 - Par 5 575 Yds (Pink Dogwood)
3 - Par 4 350 Yds (Flowering Peach)
4 - Par 3 240 Yds (Flowering Crab Apple)
5 - Par 4 455 Yds (Magnolia)
6 - Par 3 180 Yds (Juniper)
7 - Par 4 450 Yds (Pampas Grass)
8 - Par 5 570 Yds (Yellow Jasmine)
9 - Par 4 460 Yds (Carolina Cherry)
36 3,725 Yds
10 - Par 4 495 Yds (Camellia)
11 - Par 4 505 Yds (White Dogwood)
12 - Par 3 155 Yds (Golden Bell)
13 - Par 5 510 Yds (Azalea)
14 - Par 4 440 Yds (Chinese Fir)
15 - Par 5 530 Yds (Firethorn)
16 - Par 3 170 Yds (Redbud)
17 - Par 4 440 Yds (Nandina)
18 - Par 4 465 Yds (Holly)
36 3,710 Yds
Annual:  73rd
Television:  ESPN - Thursday/Friday -- 4-7:30 p.m. (et),
  Thursday/Friday -- 8-11 p.m. (et) - replay,
  CBS - Saturday -- 3:30-7 p.m. (et),
  Sunday -- 2-7 p.m. (et)
Defending Champion:  Trevor Immelman
Runner-Up:  Tiger Woods
Tournament Record:  270 (Tiger Woods, 1997)
54-Hole Record:  201 (Raymond Floyd, 1976; Tiger Woods, 1997)
36-Hole Record:  131 (Raymond Floyd, 1976)
Course Record:  63 (Nick Price, 1986; Greg Norman, 1996)
Front 9 Record:  30 (Johnny Miller, 1975; Greg Norman, 1988; K.J. Choi, 2004)
Back 9 Record:  29 (Mark Calcavecchia, 1992; David Toms, 1998)
Total Purse:  $7,500,000 (2008 figures)
Shares:  1st Place - $1,350,000; 2nd Place - $810,000; 3rd Place - $510,000
2008 Finish
Trevor Immelman280Steve Flesch286
Tiger Woods283Padraig Harrington286
Brandt Snedeker284Miguel A. Jimenez287
Stewart Cink284Robert Karlsson287
Phil Mickelson286Andres Romero287
Past Masters Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2008Trevor Immelman (280) -- Tiger Woods
2007Zach Johnson (289) -- Tiger Woods, Rory Sabbatini, Retief Goosen
2006Phil Mickelson (281) -- Tim Clark
2005*Tiger Woods (276) -- Chris DiMarco
2004Phil Mickelson (279) -- Ernie Els
2003*Mike Weir (281) -- Len Mattiace
2002Tiger Woods (276) -- Retief Goosen
2001Tiger Woods (272) -- David Duval
2000Vijay Singh (278) -- Ernie Els
1999Jose Maria Olazabal (280) -- Davis Love III
1998Mark O'Meara (279) -- Fred Couples, David Duval
1997Tiger Woods (270) -- Tom Kite
1996Nick Faldo (276) -- Greg Norman
1995Ben Crenshaw (274) -- Davis Love III
1994Jose Maria Olazabal (279) -- Tom Lehman
1993Bernhard Langer (277) -- Chip Beck
1992Fred Couples (275) -- Ray Floyd
1991Ian Woosnam (277) -- Jose Maria Olazabal
1990*Nick Faldo (278) -- Ray Floyd
1989*Nick Faldo (283) -- Scott Hoch
1988Sandy Lyle (281) -- Mark Calcavecchia
1987*Larry Mize (285) -- Seve Ballesteros, Greg Norman
1986Jack Nicklaus (279) -- Greg Norman, Tom Kite
1985Bernhard Langer (282) -- Curtis Strange, Ray Floyd, Seve Ballesteros
1984Ben Crenshaw (277) -- Tom Watson
1983Seve Ballesteros (280) -- Ben Crenshaw, Tom Kite
1982*Craig Stadler (284) -- Dan Pohl
1981Tom Watson (280) -- Johnny Miller, Jack Nicklaus
1980Seve Ballesteros (275) -- Gibby Gilbert, Jack Newton
1979*Fuzzy Zoeller (280) -- Ed Sneed, Tom Watson
1978Gary Player (277) -- Hubert Green, Rod Funseth, Tom Watson
1977Tom Watson (276) -- Jack Nicklaus
1976Ray Floyd (271) -- Ben Crenshaw
1975Jack Nicklaus (276) -- Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf
1974Gary Player (278) -- Tom Weiskopf, Dave Stockton
1973Tommy Aaron (283) -- J.C. Snead
1972Jack Nicklaus (286) -- Bruce Crampton, Bobby Mitchell, Tom Weiskopf
1971Charles Coody (279) -- Johnny Miller, Jack Nicklaus
1970*Billy Casper (279) -- Gene Littler
1969George Archer (281) -- Billy Casper, George Knudson, Tom Weiskopf
1968Bob Goalby (277) -- Roberto DeVicenzo
1967Gay Brewer (280) -- Bobby Nichols
1966*Jack Nicklaus (288) -- Tommy Jacobs, Gay Brewer
1965Jack Nicklaus (271) -- Arnold Palmer, Gary Player
1964Arnold Palmer (276) -- Jack Nicklaus, Dave Marr
1963Jack Nicklaus (286) -- Tony Lema
1962*Arnold Palmer (280) -- Dow Finsterwald, Gary Player
1961Gary Player (280) -- Arnold Palmer, Charles Coe
1960Arnold Palmer (282) -- Ken Venturi
1959Art Wall Jr (284) -- Cary Middlecoff
1958Arnold Palmer (284) -- Doug Ford, Fred Hawkins
1957Doug Ford (282) -- Sam Snead
1956Jack Burke Jr (289) -- Ken Venturi
1955Cary Middlecoff (279) -- Ben Hogan
1954*Sam Snead (289) -- Ben Hogan
1953Ben Hogan (274) -- Ed Oliver Jr
1952Sam Snead (286) -- Jack Burke Jr
1951Ben Hogan (280) -- Skee Riegel
1950Jimmy Demaret (283) -- Jim Ferrier
1949Sam Snead (282) -- Johnny Bulla, Lloyd Mangrum
1948Claude Harmon (279) -- Cary Middlecoff
1947Jimmy Demaret (281) -- Byron Nelson, Frank Stranahan
1946Herman Keiser (282) -- Ben Hogan
1945Not Held due to World War II
1944Not Held due to World War II
1943Not Held due to World War II
1942*Byron Nelson (280) -- Ben Hogan
1941Craig Wood (280) -- Byron Nelson
1940Jimmy Demaret (280) -- Lloyd Mangrum
1939Ralph Guldahl (279) -- Sam Snead
1938Henry Picard (285) -- Ralph Guldahl, Harry Cooper
1937Byron Nelson (283) -- Ralph Guldahl
1936Horton Smith (285) -- Harry Cooper
1935*Gene Sarazen (282) -- Craig Wood
1934Horton Smith (284) -- Craig Wood

* - Won in Playoff

Note:Formerly called Augusta National Invitational (1934-38).

Top Contenders in the Field
Trevor Immelman56th------------mcT-5mcT-55Won
Tiger WoodsT-185thWonWonT-15T-22WonT-3T-22nd
Stewart CinkT-27T-28mcT-24---T-17T-2010thT-17T-3
Brandt Snedeker---------------T-41---------T-3
Padraig Harrington---T-19T-27T-5mcT-13mcT-27T-7T-5
Phil MickelsonT-6T-73rd3rd3rdWon10thWonT-24T-5
Steve Flesch------mc------T-17T-29------T-5
Robert Karlsson------------------------T-30T-8
Miguel A. JimenezmcT-49T-10T-9mc---T-31T-11T-44T-8
Andres Romero---------------------------T-8
Paul Casey---------------T-6mc---T-10T-11
Lee WestwoodT-6mc---44th------mcmcT-30T-11
Nick Watney---------------------------T-11
Stuart ApplebymcmcT-31mcmcT-22T-43T-19T-7T-14
Vijay SinghT-24WonT-187thT-6T-6T-5T-8T-13T-14
Sean O'Hair---------------------mc---T-14
Retief Goosen---T-40mc2ndT-15T-13T-3T-3T-2T-17
Henrik Stenson---------------------mcT-17T-17
Mike Weir---T-28T-27T-24WonmcT-5T-11T-20T-17
Zach Johnson------------------mcT-32WonT-20
Justin LeonardT-18T-28T-27T-20mcT-35T-13T-39---T-20
Bubba Watson---------------------------T-20
Boo Weekley---------------------------T-20
Ian Poulter---------------T-31T-33---T-13T-25
Stephen Ames------------------T-45T-11T-24T-25
Adam Scott---------T-9T-23mcT-33T-27T-27T-25
Angel Cabrera---mcT-10T-9T-15mcmcT-8T-37T-25
Jeev Milkha Singh------------------------T-37T-25
Richard Sterne---------------------------T-25
Jim FurykT-14T-14T-6mc4th---28thT-22T-13T-33
Justin Rose------------T-39T-22------T-5T-36
Todd Hamilton---------------40thT-39mcmcT-36
Geoff Ogilvy---------------------T-16T-24T-39
K.J. Choi------------T-153rdT-33mcT-2741st
Robert Allenby------47thT-29T-39mcmcT-22mcT-42
Ian WoosnamT-14T-40mcmcmcmcmcmcwd44th
Sandy LyleT-48mcmcmcmcT-37mcmc43rd45th
Rory Sabbatini------mcmc------mcT-36T-2mc
Luke Donald------------------T-3T-42T-10mc
Tim Clark------------T-13mcT-392ndT-13mc
Fred CouplesT-27T-1126thT-36T-28T-6T-39T-3T-30mc
Jose M. OlazabalWonmcT-154thT-830thmcT-3T-44mc
Craig StadlerT-38mcmcT-3249thmc50thmcT-49mc
Aaron Baddeley---mcmc---------------T-52mc
Ben Crenshawmcmcmcmcmcmcmc47thT-55mc
Fuzzy Zoellermcmcmcmcmcmcmcmc60thmc
Ernie ElsT-272ndT-6T-5T-62nd47thT-27mcmc
Ben Curtis---------------mcmcT-39mcmc
Larry Mize23rdT-25mcmcmcmcmcT-42mcmc
Sergio GarciaT-38T-40mc8thT-28T-4mc46thmcmc
Bernhard LangerT-11T-28T-6T-32mcT-4T-20mcmcmc
Mark O'MearaT-31mcT-20mcT-8T-27T-31mcmcmc
Tom WatsonmcmcmcT-40mcmcmcmcmcmc
Raymond FloydT-38mcmcmcmcmcmcmcmcmc
Gary Playermcmcmcmcmcmcmcmcmcmc
Michael Campbell------mcmcmcmc---mcmcmc
Steve StrickerT-38T-19T-10mc------------mcmc
Camilo Villegas------------------------mcmc
Hunter Mahan------------T-28------------mc
D.J. Trahan------mc------------------mc
Soren Hansen---------------------------mc
Martin Kaymer---------------------------mc
Carl Pettersson---------------------T-27T-52---
Billy Mayfairmc------T-32T-37------T-1459th---
Chad Campbell------------mcmcT-17T-3mc---
Rocco MediateT-27T-52T-15T-36T-33mc---T-36------
Kenny Perry---------mcT-39mcT-29---------
Briny Baird---------------mc------------
Kevin Sutherland---------mcT-33---------------
Pat Perez------------T-45---------------
Greg Norman3rdT-11mcT-36------------------
Ross Fisher------------------------------
Ryuji Imada------------------------------
Ryo Ishikawa------------------------------
Dustin Johnson------------------------------
Anthony Kim------------------------------
Soren Kjeldsen------------------------------
Wen-Tang Lin------------------------------
Rory McIlroy------------------------------
Louis Oosthuizen------------------------------
Oliver Wilson------------------------------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Tiger Woods, Kenny Perry, Justin Leonard
Darkhorse - Nick Watney, Soren Kjeldsen, Hunter Mahan
Last Week's Pick to Win (Phil Mickelson) - Missed the cut
Last Week's Darkhorse (Charlie Wi) - Missed the cut
There's the Super Bowl in football, the World Series in baseball, the Stanley Cup in Hockey, Wimbledon in tennis, the Kentucky Derby in horse racing, or the Great American Race (Daytona 500), but there is nothing that quite compares to that first major in April for the men, The Masters. Although the LPGA Tour had its first major last week and just four weeks ago the golfers competed at the WGC-CA Championship at Doral, The Masters is the greatest spectacle in golf.

As was the case in 2008, there are plenty of interesting scenarios waiting to play out this year. Will the best player in the world, Tiger Woods, capture his fifth Masters crown? Can Phil Mickelson win his third green jacket and fourth major title? Will Ernie Els break into the Masters winners column after six top-10 finishes? Can Vijay Singh win his second Masters after finishing in the top-15 the last seven years? Will Trevor Immelman be the first player to successfully defend his Masters crown since Woods in 2002? Will Jim Furyk, Geoff Ogilvy or Padraig Harrington win their first Masters? Will Harrington win his third major championship in a row after winning the British Open and PGA Championship last year? Or will Sergio Garcia, Paul Casey, Henrik Stenson, Robert Karlsson, Camilo Villegas, Lee Westwood or Anthony Kim break through and win their first major championship? Only time will tell.

Last year, Trevor Immelman built a lead he could not lose on the back nine in the final round and won his first major championship. Immelman fired rounds of 68-68-69, sharing the lead after the first round and holding the lead alone after the second and third rounds. Immelman, who held a five-shot lead with five to play on the final day, finished with a three-over 75 on Sunday for a total of eight-under-par 280. It was enough for a three-shot victory over the four-time winner Woods.

Immelman became the second South African to don the green jacket after his idol, Gary Player, who called him Saturday night to wish him encouragement. Immelman's final-round 75 matched Arnold Palmer's 75 in 1962 as the highest winning final-round score in Masters history. It was also the highest final- round score for a major winner since Singh shot a 76 in the final round of the 2004 PGA Championship.

In 2007, Zach Johnson captured his first major title, winning by two strokes over Woods, Retief Goosen and Rory Sabbatini. Johnson shot and impressive, three-under 69 in the final round to finish at one-over-par 289, which matched the highest winning score in Masters history set by Sam Snead (1954) and Jack Burke, Jr. (1956). Johnson played in the third-to-last twosome on the final day, breaking a streak of 16 consecutive Masters champions who came from the final pairing. Nick Faldo was the last player not to play in the final group and win, when he played in the next-to-last pairing in 1990.

Johnson became the first Nationwide Tour graduate to win The Masters. His win was the 11th major championship title by a former Nationwide Tour player and first since Shaun Micheel captured the 2003 PGA Championship.

In 2006, Mickelson claimed his second Masters title in three years, as he played steadily while others faltered. When he captured the green jacket in 2004, Mickelson holed an 18-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to top Els by a single stroke. In 2006, he was able to enjoy the experience better as he walked up the 18th fairway with a three-shot cushion. Mickelson posted his first round in he 60s all week with a three-under, final-round 69. He finished at seven-under-par 281 and won by two strokes over Tim Clark. The win was Mickelson's second consecutive major championship, as he also walked off with the 2005 PGA Championship.

In winning the Masters in 2006, Mickelson was 13-under par on the par-five holes. Raymond Floyd is the only past champion to have performed better when he won in 1976, as he was 14-under par. Mickelson became only the fifth player to win the tournament before The Masters and then go on to win at Augusta. Those players to have accomplished this feat are: Sandy Lyle (1988), Art Wall (1959), Snead (1949) and Ralph Guldahl (1939). Paul Casey, winner of last week's event in Houston, is seeking to join this elite list.

In 2005, Woods birdied the first hole of a playoff to defeat Chris DiMarco and win The Masters for the fourth time in his career. It was the first major championship for Woods since the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage. On the par-three 16th hole during the final round, Woods missed the green and pitched his second above the hole and waited as his ball rolled down the slope, stayed on the edge of the cup for a second, and dropped for a birdie and one of the most memorable shots in Masters history. Woods joined Jack Nicklaus (six) and Arnold Palmer (four) as the only players with four or more Masters titles. Forty-one of Woods' 54 rounds at Augusta National have been at par or better and 38 of 48 as a professional. In his four wins at the Masters, Woods is a combined 58-under par and has won by a total of 17 strokes.

In 2004, Mickelson shed the title of "Best Player Never to Win a Major" when he birdied the final hole to defeat Els by one shot. With the win, Mickelson broke an 0-46 drought in golf's four major tournaments. With his birdie at the last, Mickelson became just the fourth player in tournament history to birdie the 72nd hole for the championship. He joined Palmer (1960), Lyle (1988) and Mark O'Meara (1998) in that illustrious category. In 2003, Mike Weir became the first left-hander and first Canadian to capture the coveted green jacket, as he defeated Len Mattiace in a playoff.

In 2002, Woods joined Nicklaus and Faldo as the only back-to-back victors of The Masters. Nicklaus turned the trick in 1965-66 and Faldo accomplished the feat in 1989-90. Woods set a new Masters mark that year with 10 consecutive rounds under par, breaking the previous record of nine set by Palmer and Floyd. That streak ended in 2003 when he opened with a four-over 76.

Although Woods and Mickelson have dominated this event in recent years, international players have fared well at The Masters, winning 11 of 21 and 13 of the last 26. No player has ever won The Masters after winning the par-three tournament held on Wednesday. In 2008, Rory Sabbatini captured the par- three event and missed the cut in The Masters. A total of 106 players have been invited to this year's event, with a total of 96 expected to compete. There are 19 first-time participants and five amateurs in this year's field.

Qualifications for entrance into the Masters are: past Masters champions; U.S. Open, British Open and PGA Championship winners (Honorary, non-competing after five years); winners of the last two Players Championships; current U.S. Amateur champion and runner-up; current British Amateur, U.S. Amateur Public Links and U.S. Mid-Amateur champions; the top-16 finishers -- including ties -- from last year's Masters; top-eight players -- including ties -- from last year's U.S. Open; top-four players -- including ties -- from last year's PGA Championship and British Open; the top-30 PGA Tour money leaders from 2008; Winners of PGA Tour events that award a full-point allocation for the Tour Championship since last year's Masters; those qualifying for the 2008 Tour Championship; 50 leaders on the Final Official World Golf Ranking for 2008, and the 50 leaders on the Official World Golf Ranking published during the week prior to the 2009 Masters Tournament. The committee can also invite any international player not otherwise qualified.

Player and Fred Couples share the record for most consecutive cuts made at 23. Couples missed the cut for the first time last year. Player made his 51st career start last year at the Masters, passing Palmer for most all-time.

Ian Poulter aced the 16th hole in 2008 with a eight-iron from 170 yards. There were no aces in 2006 and 2007. Immelman aced the 16th hole in 2005 with a seven-iron from 177 yards. In the history of The Masters, there have been 19 holes-in-one. In 2004, Harrington and Kirk Triplett made back-to-back aces on the 16th hole.

There have only been four wire-to-wire winners of the Masters: Craig Wood (1941), Palmer (1960), Nicklaus (1972) and Floyd (1976). Nicklaus holds the record for most eagles in the Masters with 24. Four players have won the Masters for their only top-10 finish in Augusta: George Archer, Lyle, Ian Woosnam and Johnson. There have been only three players who have won in their first appearance at The Masters: Fuzzy Zoeller (1979), Gene Sarazen (1935) and Horton Smith (1934). Only two players in the history of The Masters have birdied the final two holes for the win: Palmer (1960) and O'Meara (1998). The Masters is the only PGA Tour major played on the same course each year.

The PGA Tour moves to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina next week for the Verizon Heritage, where Boo Weekley has captured the title the last two years.

04/06 12:20:16 ET

As of April 6, 2009, at 12:20 PM ET