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FULL NAME: Eugenio Saraceni
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Initially, Sarazen's life as a pro was a desperately hard one. However by the age of 21, three years after turning pro, he had won 3 major titles. During the 1930s, he seemed to be more interested in making money rather than winning prestigious tournaments. He played exhibition matches all over the globe and indeed, became the highest paid sportsman in the world.
Sarazen was a member of the American Ryder Cup team on six occasions. He regretted that he never captained the team; the authorities preferring Walter Hagen instead. As the twilight fell on his career in later years, he became a radio commentator. However he continued to play golf all his life and recorded very good scores into his 70s.
While Sarazen is remembered for his many victories including winning the Open and US Open in the same year, we should pay tribute to him for having the courage and determination to overcome his background to become so successful.
Awards and Honors
• Winner of 39 PGA Tournaments, Gene Sarazen was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1974.
• Sarazen invented the modern sand wedge in 1930. He called it the sand iron.
• Sarazen hit "The shot heard 'round the world" in the 1935 Masters. It was a final round 225-yard 4-wood on the par-5 15th hole that went in, giving him a very rare double eagle 2 on the hole. It led to him later winning the tournament in a playoff.
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