5 Of Golf's Most Important Missed Putts

Putts can win tournaments and change careers, or break them. Here we run through five of the most agonising missed putts in history...

Most Important Missed Putts
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Putts can win tournaments and change careers, or break them. Here we run through five of the most agonising missed putts in history...

5 Of Golf's Most Important Missed Putts

Bernhard Langer - 18th hole, 1991 Ryder Cup singles, Kiawah Island

The German was 2 down with four to play, but got it back to all square with one to go.

He faced a 6ft putt on the final green for Europe to retain the Cup, but it drifted agonisingly past the right edge.

Langer has faced years of pain with the flatstick but has cleaned up on the Champions Tour over the past decade.

Tom Watson - 18th hole, 2009 Open Championship final round, Turnberry

Most Important Missed Putts

The 59-year-old stood on the 18th fairway on the verge of history and a sixth Claret Jug.

His approach flew long and his putt back wasn’t brilliant, but he still had a putt to win.

It didn’t touch the hole and he lost the play-off.

Scott Hoch - 10th hole, 1989 US Masters play-off, Augusta National

On the first play-off hole – the 10th at Augusta – Hoch’s birdie effort went just past, but he was left with a 2ft putt to win.

He missed it and went on to lose out at the next to Nick Faldo.

Related: 10 of the most important putts of all time

Sergio Garcia - 18th hole, 2007 Open Championship final round, Carnoustie

Garcia had led by three going into the final round and had a par putt to win on the last.

He struck it well on what appeared to be the correct line but the ball refused to turn.

He lost the play-off to Padraig Harrington.

The Spaniard eventually won his first major 10 years later at this year's Masters.

Doug Sanders - 18th hole, 1970 Open Championship final round, St Andrews

Sanders left himself a 3ft par putt for the win, but stood over it for an age before tentatively pushing it past the right edge.

He tied with Jack Nicklaus and then lost out in the 18-hole play-off.

Related: Doug Sanders 'The Peacock of the Fairways' Dies Aged 86

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Elliott Heath
Senior Staff Writer

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-6. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x