Emotional Lee Elder joins Gary Participant, Jack Nicklaus on first tee at Masters

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AUGUSTA, Ga. – Lee Elder joined Jack Nicklaus and Gary Participant simply after daybreak Thursday at Augusta Nationwide to start the 85th Masters with a historic ceremony.
Elder, 86, was the primary Black participant to take part within the Masters in 1975 and he was added to the ceremonial threesome this yr alongside Nicklaus and Participant. Though he wasn’t in a position to hit the normal tee shot due to well being points, the four-time PGA Tour winner savored what he known as an “emotional expertise.”
“To me, my coronary heart may be very tender this morning, not heavy tender, tender due to the great issues that I’ve encountered since arriving right here on Monday and having the ability to see a number of the nice buddies that I’ve revamped the previous years, particularly like these two gents [Nicklaus and Player] which can be right here,” Elder mentioned.
85th Masters Match: Full-field scores | Full protection
Former Masters champions Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson had been on the primary tee to observe the ceremonial begin as was Cameron Champ, one in all 4 Tour members with Black heritage.
Nicklaus gained the historic 1975 Masters and was requested what he remembered from Elder’s look within the match.

“I used to be type of astonished when that was introduced {that a} Black participant hadn’t performed as a result of Lee had definitely performed nicely sufficient, and he had Teddy Rhodes earlier than him and he had Charlie Sifford earlier than him and fellows who might nicely have performed and been invited to the Masters,” Nicklaus mentioned. “I assumed it was lengthy overdue when he lastly received invited.”
When match officers introduced Elder could be becoming a member of the ceremonial begin additionally they introduced the plan to create two scholarships for gamers on the boys’s golf workforce at Paine [Ga.] School, a traditionally Black school, in Elder’s title.

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