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Pebble Memories: Recalling Irwin’s Rocky Assist

It’s Pebble Beach week on the PGA Tour, which means celeb sightings and stunning shots of Stillwater Cove on CBS.

The Tour’s annual Monterey Peninsula stop also stirs nostalgia among lovers of the game, what with all of the great U.S. Open and Crosby Clambake moments that have transpired at Pebble Beach through the years.

One of my favorite Pebble Beach recollections is Hale Irwin’s shoreline-assisted victory at the 1984 Crosby. I was a sixth-grader tagging along with my mother in a department store when I watched Irwin smother-hook his tee shot into the rocks on Pebble Beach’s famous 18th hole, only to have it ricochet from certain doom back onto the fairway. The yellow-sweatered Irwin, playing a ball of the same hue, proceeded to hit the flagstick with his third shot, make birdie and force a playoff with Canadian Jim Nelford, which he subsequently won with another birdie on the second extra hole, Pebble Beach’s par-4 16th.

Irwin’s heroics figure prominently in the opening minute of this video. Enjoy.


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