1942: Sam Snead wins his 1st major title at the 25th PGA Championship

Sam Snead

Sam Snead wins his 1st major at the 1942 PGA Championship

On this day, In 1942 Sam Snead won the 25th PGA Championship at Seaview Country Club in New Jersey.  He defeated Jim Turnesa 2 & 1  in match play format to take the title.  It was the first of Snead’s seven major titles, and he began his service in the U.S. Navy immediately after the event. Due to World War II, this was the second and final major of the year, following the Masters. None of the majors were played in 1943; the PGA Championship returned in 1944 and the other three in 1946.

On the way to the finals, Snead had Ed Dudley in the quarterfinals in which he won 1 up.  Next was the 1940 Masters winner Jimmy Demaret, who was defeated 3 & 2.

Turnesa took down some heavy favorites in order to get a crack at Slammin’ Sam in the final.  He beat Ben Hogan 2 & 1 in the quarterfinals then Byron Nelson on the 37th hole of the semi’s. Turnesa was three up on Snead after eighteen holes of play and it looked like he would pull off one of the great upsets of championship golf…  Suddenly he lost his game on the closing eighteen and was defeated on the 35th hole after Snead chipped in from 50 ft. A crushing blow indeed.

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1 Comment

  1. More PGA of America pencil whipping! The match play format consisted of only 32 players compared to the usual 64. US war-time “majors” shouldn’t count including the 1942 Masters and the 1945 PGA Championship.

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