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ROCKY STARTS

April 20, 2009
April 20, 2009

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April 20, 2009

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ROCKY STARTS

Three teens made highly publicized Masters debuts last week, and all of them turned in less-than-stellar performances. Ryo Ishikawa (above, center) and Danny Lee (right) missed the cut, while Rory McIlroy came in 20th. Here's the good news: First-time results are not necessarily predictors of future performance. Among the 11 players who have won more than one green jacket in the last 55 years, the best first-time finish was a tie for 10th, by Arnold Palmer in 1955, while four of the multiple winners missed the cut in their first Augusta outings.

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PlayerDebut Yr./FinishSecond Yr./FinishFollow-up
Arnold Palmer1955/T101956/21Tied 7th in third start, won in fourth
Gary Player1957/241958/MCTied 8th in third start, won in fifth
Jack Nicklaus1959/MC1960/13Tied 7th in third start, won in fifth
Tom Watson1970/MC1975/T8Tied 8th in second start, won in fourth
Ben Crenshaw1972/191973/24Tied 8th in sixth start, won in 11th
Seve Ballesteros1977/331978/18Won in fourth start
Nick Faldo1979/401983/20One of three to win back-to-back
Bernhard Langer1982/MC1984/31Won in third start
José M. Olaàbal1985/MC1987/MCTied 8th in third start, won in 8th
Phil Mickelson1991/461993/34Tied 7th in third start, won in 12th
Tiger Woods1995/411996/MCWon in third start
PHOTOROBERT BECK (ISHIKAWA)PHOTOROBERT BECK (MCILROY)PHOTOROBERT BECK (LEE)