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Jul 03, 2014 | 11:30 AM

A Golf Life

For the past 3,180 days Errie Ball was the last surviving participant from the first Masters in 1934, known then as the Augusta National Invitational Tournament. His amazing life in golf ended yesterday with his death at the age of 103. The Wales native provided one of the last links to the Golden Era of golf. As a 15-year old he qualified for the 1926 British Open at Royal Lytham and St Annes in England. His first job after moving to the United States in 1930? Assistant professional at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, the home course of Bobby Jones, who won that British Open four years earlier. At that first Masters, Ball (pictured above, second from left) was one of 72 participants invited by Jones. He made the cut before finishing tied for 38th after shooting a final round 86. His playing career, which included one win and four top-10s on the PGA Tour, was secondary to a teaching career that spanned 83 years (most recently at Willoughby Golf Club in Florida) as a PGA of America member and Hall of Famer. He made only one other appearance in The Masters in 1957, missing the cut by three strokes. But eight decades later, he still kept tabs on the tournament, noting, "I never thought it would get as big as it is today."

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Jul 02, 2014 | 12:07 PM

Turning the Page

Seems all is forgiven between Sergio Garcia and New York golf fans. Garcia, you might remember, flipped the gallery the bird at the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage after the alcohol-fueled fans kept heckling him for his gripping and re-gripping routine. Well, judging by TaylorMade's newest video, it seems as all is well with Sergio and Long Island golfers. A few weeks ago, Garcia nonchalantly bought a bucket of range balls and started hitting balls off one of the driving mats as curious onlookers gathered around him (his pre-shot routine took a lot less this time so there was no mocking). He then announced that they would all be fitted for a new SLDR driver as a TaylorMade van pulled up. He even did some of the adjustments himself and played 1st-tee commentator as everyone teed off with their new drivers.

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Jul 01, 2014 | 08:39 AM

St. Andrews On Sale

Your chance to own a golf course in St. Andrews—two of them, in fact—is here, assuming you have about $60 million you don’t know what to do with. The Fairmont St Andrews Hotel and its two championship courses, perched idyllically on a cliff just three miles from town, are on the block. The 520-acre property with stunning views of the town and St. Andrews Bay includes the Kittocks and Torrance golf courses, a 209-room luxury hotel, and a state-of-the-art spa where Prince William trained for his water polo matches while at the university. There’s also planning permission in place for the construction of 79 homes. Fairmont has even agreed to manage the hotel until 2031. For more info, check out the Fairmont website. Act now and you can host a few hundreds of your closest friends when the Open Championships returns to St. Andrews next year.

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Jun 30, 2014 | 10:48 AM

All Work And No Play?

If you’re hoping to climb to the top of the corporate ladder, a professor at the Wharton School of Business has a recommendation: Don’t play golf! You heard that right. Writing on the website of Psychology Today, Adam Grant, a Ph.D. in organizational psychology and a “leading expert on success, work motivation, and helping and giving behaviors,” lists six “perks of celebrity life” that he says are bad for new CEOs. Among them: using the corporate jet for personal use, buying a mansion, winning awards, writing books, and serving on other companies' boards. But his number-one admonition is “Don’t play golf.” After admitting that good golfers make more money as CEOs, he goes on “the time they spend on the golf course hurts their companies,” quoting a study that found that as chief executives, “golfers perform worse than non-golfers and [corporate] performance decreases with golfing ability.” He also recommends turning down invitations to tee it up with “important people.” And here we thought one of the main reasons for becoming a CEO was to play golf.

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