1969: Floyd wins, Player wins respect

Champion: Raymond Floyd, Miami, Fla.
Site: NCR Country Club (South Course), Dayton, Ohio
Date: Aug. 14-17
Purse: $175,000
Par: 36-35 - 71 (6,915 yards)
Field: 139 Cut at 149 (79 players advanced)

It could easily be discarded as a regrettable weekend in golf, but the 51st PGA Championship will be remembered as a time when a great golfer - South African Gary Player - stood tall in the face of ugly demonstrators in the gallery; and a moment when another great player - 26-year-old Raymond Floyd - played well enough to win while surrounded by a suffocating cordon of security guards. Player was the brunt of demonstrations throughout the week, including spectators rushing him on the 10th green in the third round; a cup of ice in the face, and a golf ball tossed on the green while he was preparing to play. Floyd built a five stroke lead after three rounds, but Player fought back to within a stroke. Floyd opened the door with bogeys on the 13th and 15th holes.

Floyd stemmed Player's rally at the 16th hole, rolling in a 35-foot sidehill putt for a birdie, while Player missed his par. "Honest to God," said Floyd, "I was trying to two-putt." Player refused to concede, making a birdie at the 17th. Floyd bunkered his approach to the 18th, but Player missed a 40-foot birdie attempt. Floyd got down in two strokes for the one stroke victory.

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