1996 Masters: Norman's Collapse Turns Into Faldo's Green Jacket

Greg Norman looks to the ground in dejection after missing another putt during the final round of the 1996 Masters
A dejected Greg Norman during the final round of the 1996 Masters. David Cannon/Getty Images

It's remembered as one of the epic collapses in major championship history, but Greg Norman's final-round foibles obscured how good champion Nick Faldo played to win the 1996 Masters Tournament.

Quick Bits

  • Winner: Nick Faldo, 276
  • Dates: April 11-14, 1996
  • Location: Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga.
  • Masters Tournament number: This was the 60th time the Masters was played.

How Faldo Capitalized on Norman's Collapse to Win 1996 Masters

Nick Faldo won his third Masters championship, but the story of the 1996 Masters will always be Greg Norman's collapse. Norman had lost multiple majors in dramatic fashion leading up to this tournament - sometimes through his own error, sometimes by virtue of another player's great play or spectacular shot - but his collapse at the 1996 Masters is something that will long be remembered.

Norman opened the tournament in the first round by tying the course record (and major championship 18-hole record) with a 63. He continued playing well throughout the middle rounds, carding 69-71 in the second and third rounds. Norman's lead after the first round was two strokes; following the second round, four strokes.

And after the third round, Norman led second-place Faldo by six shots, 13-under to 7-under. But by the end of Round 4, Norman trailed Faldo by five strokes. An 11-shot swing resulting from Faldo's 67 and Norman's 78.

Faldo earned the win - his 67 was the best score of the final round. But Norman handed Faldo the opportunity.

Faldo chipped a couple shots off Norman's lead early in the final round, but Norman appeared to be OK - he still led by four strokes following seven holes of the final round. Norman - who had made only four bogeys combined in the first three rounds - then started falling apart. There was a six-shot swing over the next five holes, as Norman dropped five strokes while Faldo recorded one birdie. Faldo led by two strokes after the 12 hole, which Norman double-bogeyed.

Faldo's lead was still two strokes after 15 holes. But Norman double-bogeyed again on No. 16 after putting his tee ball into the water. Norman shot 40 on the back nine.

Norman finished second for the third time at The Masters. But it probably felt like finishing last after blowing a 6-stroke lead (the largest 54-hole lead ever lost in a major championship to this point). Norman handled the aftermath with grit and grace, but he rarely challenged for wins again after his collapse here.

The 1996 Masters was the sixth and final major championship victory of Faldo's career.

1996 Masters Scores

Results from the 1996 Masters golf tournament played at the par-72 Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga.:

Nick Faldo, $450,000 69-67-73-67--276
Greg Norman, $270,000 63-69-71-78--281
Phil Mickelson, $170,000 65-73-72-72--282
Frank Nobilo, $120,000 71-71-72-69--283
Scott Hoch, $95,000 67-73-73-71--284
Duffy Waldorf, $95,000 72-71-69-72--284
Davis Love III, $77,933 72-71-74-68--285
Jeff Maggert, $77,933 71-73-72-69--285
Corey Pavin, $77,933 75-66-73-71--285
Scott McCarron, $65,000 70-70-72-74--286
David Frost, $65,000 70-68-74-74--286
Bob Tway, $52,500 67-72-76-72--287
Lee Janzen, $52,500 68-71-75-73--287
Ernie Els, $52,500 71-71-72-73--287
Fred Couples, $43,750 78-68-71-71--288
Mark Calcavecchia, $43,750 71-73-71-73--288
John Huston, $40,000 71-71-71-76--289
Paul Azinger, $32,600 70-74-76-70--290
Mark O'Meara, $32,600 72-71-75-72--290
Tom Lehman, $32,600 75-70-72-73--290
Nick Price, $32,600 71-75-70-74--290
David Duval, $32,600 73-72-69-76--290
Larry Mize, $25,000 75-71-77-68--291
Loren Roberts, $25,000 71-73-72-75--291
Raymond Floyd, $21,000 70-74-77-71--292
Brad Faxon, $21,000 69-77-72-74--292
Bob Estes, $18,900 71-71-79-72--293
Justin Leonard, $18,900 72-74-75-72--293
Jim Furyk, $15,571 75-70-78-71--294
Jim Gallagher, Jr., $15,571 70-76-77-71--294
Hale Irwin, $15,571 74-71-77-72--294
Scott Simpson, $15,571 69-76-76-73--294
Craig Stadler, $15,571 73-72-71-78--294
John Daly, $15,571 71-74-71-78--294
Ian Woosnam, $15,571 72-69-73-80--294
Fred Funk, $12,333 71-72-76-76--295
Jay Haas, $12,333 70-73-75-77--295
Bernhard Langer, $12,333 75-70-72-78--295
Colin Montgomerie, $11,050 72-74-75-75--296
Vijay Singh, $11,050 69-71-74-82--296
Steve Lowery, $10,050 71-74-75-77--297
Jack Nicklaus, $10,050 70-73-76-78--297
Seve Ballesteros, $9,300 73-73-77-76--299
Alexander Cejka, $8,800 73-71-78-80--302