27th PGA Championship
A 36-hole qualifying round to get into match play was conducted the Monday and Tuesday before the Championship. Defending PGA Champion Bob Hamilton was exempt and 31 players qualified. Byron Nelson and Johnny Revolta were the low qualifiers with 138. A score of 147 qualified for match play, with 10 players at 148 having to play for eight spots. Some notable players who didn’t make it to match play included Tony Manero (150), Craig Wood (150), Jimmy Thomson (154) and Joe Turnesa (157). All matches played were 36 holes.
The finals matched Byron Nelson, in his fifth appearance in the finals, against Sam Byrd, who was making just his third PGA appearence. After the morning 18, when Byrd finished the round with four straight birdies and a 2-up lead, Nelson was demoralized. When Byrd opened with par, par, birdie to gain another hole, it looked impossible. But Nelson didn’t give up and won the 22nd, 25th and 26th holes to square the match. He went in front with a birdie at the 29th hole, which turned out to be the first of four straight holes that he won, and wrapped up the match. Nelson was 2-under for the day and a total of 37-under-par for the 204 holes he played in the Championship. Byrd played well in the finals, as he was also 2-under-par for the day. But over the course of the 197 holes he played in the Championship, he was only 14-under-par.