On This Date in Sports April 14, 1968: Signed Away

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Roberto De Vicenzo signs away a chance to win the Green Jacket when he turns in an incorrect scorecard after the final round in the Masters. Starting the day at four under par, De Vicenzo shoots a 65, despite a bogey on the final hole. However, when he turned in his scorecard, Roberto De Vicenzo incorrectly listed a par on the 17th hole when he shot a birdie. Due to recording a 66, De Vincenzo finishes one stroke behind Bob Goalby.

Born in Argentina, Roberto DeVicenzo was one of the most respected golfers on the tour for years, but it was not until the ladder stages of his career that he found success in the majors, winning the British Open in 1967. A year later, DeVicenzo was in a position to win the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club. Sitting two strokes behind leader Gary Player, De Vicenzo was one of 11 golfers within three strokes of the lead heading into the final day of competition. After struggling in the second round, Roberto DeVicenzo shot a solid 70 and sat at -4 with a three-round total of (-6) 212.

Gary Player of South Africa already had won the career Grand Slam and was looking for his second Green Jacket. After a par-72 in the first round, Player sprang to the front of the leaderboard with a five-under-par 67 in the second round. Gary Player continued to hold a one-stroke lead entering the final round, thanks to a 71 on Saturday. Entering the final day of the Masters at -6, Gary Player finished with a par 72 and faded out of contention, and finished tied for seventh with a four-round total of (-6) 282.

The final day of the 1968 Masters was full of low scores, as players like Jack Nicklaus and Bert Yancey made a run at the lead. Nicklaus a shot five-under, 67 and finished at -7 for the tournament, while Yancey had a seven-under-par 65, finishing the tournament a 279 (-9). Roberto De Vicenzo started Sunday with an eagle on the first hole and birdies on two and three to get down to -8. Bob Goalby, who was -5 after three rounds, began his day with four straight pars. Over the next four holes, Goalby had three birdies and sat one stroke behind De Vicenzo, who also scored a birdie on the eighth hole. Roberto De Vincenzo extended his lead to two strokes with a birdie on the 12th hole. 

Goalby began making his move with birdies on the 13th and 14th to move into a share of the lead at -10. Both Bob Goalby and Roberto De Vincenzo hit big shots on the 15th as Goalby took a one-shot lead with an Eagle as DeVicenzo birdied the hole. Heading into the final two holes, Bob Goalby had a one-stroke lead at -12. However, after a bogey, it appeared the lead flipped when Roberto De Vicenzo got a birdie.  De Vicenzo gave back his advantage with a bogey on the final hole, while Goalby finished at -11 with a par. By all rights, there should have been a playoff. However, Roberto De Vicenzo scored himself with a par on the 17th hole and signed over a scorecard with a 278 (-10), which put him one stroke behind Bob Goalby. The Green Jacket won by Bob Goalby would be the only major title of his career.