On this day, In 1946 Ben Hogan wins his first major title during PGA Championship at Portland Golf Club
Ben Hogan beats Ed Oliver 6 & 4 at Portland Golf Club to win the 1946 PGA Championship
Published: August 25th, 2016 –– Ben Hogan, often thought as the architect of the modern swing, a man who worked harder and spent so much time thinking about the game won his maiden major on this day. It was in August 22nd when the 28th annual PGA Championship began at Portland Golf Club located in Portland, Oregon. The matchplay format consisted of the players completing 36 holes in each of the round robins.
Over the course of the event Hogan defeated Frank Moore 5 & 4 then Jimmy Demerit 10 & 9. In the final Hogan faltered and fell three holes back of big Ed Oliver. Down three holes with 17 to go Hogan put on a show on the final day of play. It all came to an end on the 32nd hole of the day when both Oliver and Hogan hit good drives, Oliver hit the green 25 feet away from the cup while hogan stuck an 8 iron to a couple of feet. Oliver missed his long desperate putt to save the match but missed it. He conceded the putt to Hogan and the rest was history. Hogan won $3,500 for the win and in the process completed one of the greatest comebacks in the PGA Championships then short history.
Hogans odd history with the PGA Championship
It should be noted that although Hogan’s first two major championships came at the PGA Championship he would regularly decline invitations to the final major of the season for two reasons. First off, up until 1958 the PGA Championship’s was played in matchplay format which didn’t exactly suit Hogan’s game. He liked to go out on the course with strategy in mind and shoot a low number. Secondly, the PGA would have players complete 36 holes a day if needed and after Hogan’s near fatal car-wreck in February of 1949 it was tough for him to play more than 18 holes a day.