AUGUSTA, Ga. — Tony Finau injured his left ankle celebrating a hole-in-one during the Par-3 Contest at the Masters and then seemingly popped it back into place.
Finau flew his ball to the back of the seventh green Wednesday on the par-3 course at Augusta National and spun it back into the hole for an ace. He started running toward the hole to celebrate, then turned and backpedaled before landing awkwardly on his left ankle. He dropped to one knee and ended up pushing the joint back into place.
Finau, ranked No. 34 in the world, ended up withdrawing from the event but stuck around for the final two holes. He gingerly walked to a golf cart and was driven off the course.
Finau did not meet with reporters, only saying, "I'm going to get it checked out" as he headed into the clubhouse.
How it's done
Aside from Finau, golf's greats — and their grandsons — got the Masters off to a dramatic start.
Tom Watson, 68, won the par-3 event. Gary Nicklaus aced the ninth hole as the caddie for his grandfather Jack Nicklaus.
Watson would have damaged his chances to win another Masters when he was the surprising winner of the contest at 6 under par. Known as a jinx, no one has ever won the Par 3 Contest and the Masters in the same year.
"After I birdied the first four holes, I said let's go for it," Watson said.
The previous oldest winner of the Par 3 Contest was Sam Snead at 61 in 1974.
Gary Nicklaus, known as GT, scored his first-ever ace and had his grandfather in tears in a wild celebration. The 78-year-old Nicklaus finished tied for fourth at 4 under par. Their playing partner was 82-year-old Gary Player, who finished tied for 10th.
Nicklaus, the six-time Masters champion, said he ranks the hole-in-one by his 15-year-old grandson as his No. 1 golf memory.
"To watch your grandson do that is special," said a still-choked-up Nicklaus.
Tommy Fleetwood and Thomas Pieters finished tied for second at 5 under par. Adam Hadwin and Chez Reavie finished tied for fourth with Nicklaus.
History at Augusta
Augusta National went nearly 80 years before having female members. Now the club is inviting its first female competitors.
The Augusta National Women's Amateur begins next year, a 54-hole event for top amateurs from around the world who will become the first women to play a tournament at the home of the Masters.
Women have long played at Augusta National, but it wasn't until the fall of 2012 that the club invited its first women as members — former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier Darla Moore. The latest member is former USGA President Diana Murphy.
"This is one of the great institutions, not just American institutions but international institutions, so it's evolved and it's become more inclusive, and that's very exciting," Rice said.
The opening two rounds will be held at Champions Retreat in Augusta, with the final round moving to Augusta National on Saturday, April 9.