They call it a tradition unlike any other. It's the Masters Tournament, which started in 1934 and continues to be one of the most popular golf events of the year.
The Masters is a four-day event that is played in early April. This year it runs from April 9-12. The Masters always takes place at Augusta National Golf Club, a beautiful golf course in Georgia. You can recognize the Augusta course because of its famous stone bridges that stretch across clear ponds. Since the Tournament always takes place in the spring, the grass is always bright green and colorful flowers are just starting to bloom. One of the reasons why so many people watch the Masters on television is because of the beautiful scenery.
Players and fans get excited for the Masters every year because it is the first major golf tournament of the season. The most famous golfers all play in the Masters. Also, everybody who has ever won the Masters gets invited back to play in the Tournament every year. This tradition allows people to remember all of the great players who have participated in the Masters over the years.
One of the most important traditions at the Masters is the green jacket. Each year, instead of a trophy or plaque, the winning golfer gets a green jacket. The green jacket is one of the most treasured awards in all of sports. At the end of the Tournament, everybody cheers and celebrates when the winner puts on the jacket.
The most successful golfer in the history of the Masters is Jack Nicklaus. Between 1963 and 1986, Nicklaus won the Tournament six times, more than any other player. Another great player, Arnold Palmer, won the Masters four times between 1958 and 1964. Tiger Woods has also won the Masters four times, in 1997, 2001, 2002 and 2005. Woods was just 21 years old when he won the Masters for the first time in 1997. He the youngest golfer to ever win the green jacket.
This year, Woods is again expected to compete for Masters Championship. One of his main rivals will be Phil Mickelson, a left-handed golfer who won the Masters in 2004 and 2006. Vijay Singh of India, Padraig Harrington of Ireland, Geoff Ogilvy of Australia and Sergio Garcia of Spain are some of the best golfers in the world and they too will be challenging Woods for the Championship.
Starting when the first player tees off, the Masters Tournament gives fans the chance to watch the best golfers in the world play the most famous course in America. They will play for four days, until one person finally gets to wear the green jacket.
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