Golf Asia


- Hubert Tang

The first time I came across the name Julius Boros was when I unearthed my father’s Wilson Profession­al irons as a teenager. Though I was curious, I had no idea of the man whose signature was scrawled across the back of each clubface.

The suddenly in weeks past, the name Julius Boros was being mentioned in the same breath as Phil Mickelson, the latter usurping the former as the oldest man to win a major championsh­ip, and the same one at that. Julius ‘Moose’ Boros lifted the Wanamaker Trophy back in 1968 at 48 years and 4 months, Phil ‘The Thrill’ Mickelson in 2021 at age 50 years 11 months.

That it’s taken 53 years for the duck to be broken underscore­s how it was no mean feat back then, considerin­g Boros bested Arnold Palmer himself by a single stroke. With the talent pool deep and more rookie champions straight out of the gate, for Mickelson to break the record in this day and age is nothing short of Philnomena­l. The alignment of peak mental, emotional and physical health, along with a golf game firing on all cylinders is a major advantage too; as Phil The Thrill can attest.

Jack Nicklaus came closest as the second oldest major winner, having won the ’86 Masters at age 46, and there were two consecutiv­e challenger­s for oldest - Greg Norman was 53 at the 2008 Open Championsh­ip, and Tom Watson at 59, missed clinching the 2009 Open and the prestige of oldest major winner, by a single putt.

With Lee Westwood’s return to form at 48 and Padraig Harrington, 49, having kept pace with Mickelson at the PGA Championsh­ip, forgive my romantcisi­ng that yet another middle-aged man is going to capture the oldest golf tournament come July. But first, there’s the U.S. Open.

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