My Moments
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Over-and-Under Method

One of many innovations introduced at the Masters, the Tournament's over/under scoring system shows contestants' cumulative standing in relation to par. Hole by hole, red numerals indicate under-par scores, green numerals over-par scores and green zeroes even par.

A. The 'Prior' Column

To the left of each player's name, under a column marked "Prior," is a red or green numeral that indicates where he stood against par at the start of the current round.

B. Watson Bogeys No. 1

The red "5," by virtue of being one less than his "Prior" total (also in red), indicates that Bubba Watson has gone one stroke less under par by bogeying the par-4 hole No. 1. This number does not refer to his aggregate score on the hole.

C. Watson Plays Nos. 4-7 in 1-under

In this four-hole stretch, Watson goes par-birdie-par-par. Each time a player makes par, his score remains the same as on the previous hole. When a player who is under par makes a birdie, the red number indicating his score increases by one.

D. Scott Pars Hole No. 1

The green "2" shown here reflects that Adam Scott has parred the first hole, thereby maintaining his "Prior" score.

E. Scott Birdies Nos. 7-9

With each successive birdie, Scott lowers his cumulative score to 2 over par, then 1 over par, then even par. When a player who is over par makes a birdie, the green number indicating his score decreases by one.

In 1960, the Masters introduced a new method of reporting players' scoring, listing their cumulative standing in relation to par rather than their aggregate totals. This system soon became standard for tournaments and television broadcasts of professional golf worldwide. To this day, under-par scores are shown in red numerals, over-par scores in green numerals, and even-par scores by green zeroes.

Leader boards hold a special place at the Masters. Traditionally, tournaments had only one scoreboard, situated near the clubhouse. But Augusta National co-founders Clifford Roberts and Bobby Jones decided to station leader boards throughout the property so patrons could be better apprised of the competition. Eleven leader boards are strategically placed around the course, each listing the 10 lowest scorers at a given time.

Because the leader boards are manually operated, there is often a lag between the moment a player holes out and when his score is shown. Anticipation builds, especially on Sunday afternoon, as patrons wait to see how one or more of the leaders have fared on a certain hole. Some of the volunteers who man the leader boards have been known to execute the task with a hint of drama, posting the latest numbers with an ever-so-slight slam.

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