How I Played the Game

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Byron Nelson is golf's greatest living legend. He is one of the finest golfers ever to pick up a putter, and the man who had the most magnificent year any golfer ever had - 1945, when he won an incredible eighteen PGA tournaments, including eleven in a row, and finished second in seven others. How I Played the Game is the beautifully told tale, in his own words, of a man determined to be the best ever: his hardscrabble rural Texas upbringing and his near-death experience with typhoid fever; his early years as a ...
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How I Played the Game: An Autobiography

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Overview

Byron Nelson is golf's greatest living legend. He is one of the finest golfers ever to pick up a putter, and the man who had the most magnificent year any golfer ever had - 1945, when he won an incredible eighteen PGA tournaments, including eleven in a row, and finished second in seven others. How I Played the Game is the beautifully told tale, in his own words, of a man determined to be the best ever: his hardscrabble rural Texas upbringing and his near-death experience with typhoid fever; his early years as a caddie at Fort Worth's Glen Garden Country Club (where as a 15-year-old he beat another young caddie named Ben Hogan in the Caddie Championship by one shot); the lean years as an amateur and as a young pro during the Depression; and the golden years of the 1940s, when he invented the modern golf swing and forged the legend of "Lord Byron." Even after his sudden retirement (the real reason for which is finally revealed here), his impact on the game never lessened. Besides his many years as an insightful TV golf commentator, he was mentor to several future golf champions, Ken Venturi and Tom Watson among them. And he continued to play top-caliber golf with the greats of the game, like Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, and Arnold Palmer, and some who were less than great - President Eisenhower, Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, and a host of others. Laced throughout with scores of priceless stories, anecdotes, opinions, and even golf tips, and with an in-depth, event-by-event recreation of his golden year, 1945, How I Played the Game is golf writing and remembrance of the highest order - and irresistible reading for every golfer and fan.
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Editorial Reviews

New York Times
A careful chronology that will serve as one of the most detailed and anecdotal accounts of a seminal era in American golf.
The New York Times
A careful chronology that will serve as one of the most detailed and anecdotal accounts of a seminal era in American golf.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Nelson, now 80, is one of golf's immortals for a number of reasons, chief among them the astounding records he set in 1945 when he won 18 major PGA tournaments, 11 of them consecutively, and had an average score of 68.3. During the previous year, he captured eight events, had an average of 69.7 and earned $37,000, more than twice what any professional had ever made. Such triumphs brought him special admiration, for Nelson had grown up in a poor Texas family, had not finished high school, was deeply religious, did not smoke or drink and married the first young woman he ever dated. His modesty shines through in this autobiography, a winning volume in every sense. Photos not seen by PW. June
Bill Ott
For many golf fans, Byron Nelson has always been the guy who won all those tournaments during the war, when everyone else was in the service. For younger fans, he was the color commentator who rarely said anything colorful. Neither impression is entirely inaccurate, but both need amending, and this anecdotal autobiography, while no more colorful than Nelson's commentary, does serve to clear the air. Nelson's one-year record in 1945 remains unmatched: 11 tournament wins "in a row" and 18 wins over the year. Nelson recounts the entire year and notes that, while his main competitors--Ben Hogan and Sam Snead--spent part of 1945 in the service, they also played a good portion of the year on the tour. (Nelson was 4-F due to a blood condition.) Now 81, Nelson has nary a discouraging word to say about anything in his life, and while the homespun kindliness seems entirely genuine, it's bound to sound a little saccharine to modern ears. Still, it's hard to fault a man for being too nice--especially if he could hit long irons the way Nelson could. Despite the sugar coating, this offers a revealing look at professional golf before the money got big and the pants got ugly.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589793255
  • Publisher: Taylor Trade Publishing
  • Publication date: 4/27/2006

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