• U.S.

Sport: At Sandwich

3 minute read

A very small man with his hat pulled over his eyes sat on a wooden bench smoking a cigaret. Near him three or four gentlemen wearing badges were arguing in low voices; one was thumbing the pages of a rule book. Around the bench and the arguing gentlemen several thousand people shuffled and murmured. Suddenly one of the badge-wearers stepped forward and said to the little man: “All right, Mr. Jurado, you can drop it out two club’s lengths.” The little man smiled, got up, and placed at a spot indicated to him by the officials a golf ball which had been jammed against a leg of the bench. He played it with a quick stroke onto the green ahead of him. The crowd moved forward.

All week this little man, Jose Jurado, had kept his .obliging manners, his smiles, efficiency, and unconcern. He had led the qualifiers for the British Open Golf Championship. Now, playing his last round, he was doing his best to upset the English notion that no member of a Latin race could stand the strain of tournament golf.

The wind blew cold over the dunes of the course at Sandwich; the sun was hidden behind rolling clouds. Only a Scot could enjoy golf on a day like this, but Jurado played quietly on. Most of the Americans had turned their scores in. Tommy Armour was out, eliminated on the second day after a hopeless round, but Barnes was in the running, so were Mehlhorn and Sarazen, and as for Hagen, he was leading and looked like a certain winner—Hagen, who had been acting in the movies all winter, who had given his clubs away and decided only a few months before to quit golf, Hagen, who had been beaten 18 up by Archie Compston in an exhibition match.

Jurado’s gallery was thinning away. The people were more interested in Sarazen who still had a chance to tie Hagen. They were talking about Hagen’s morning round —how he had topped his brassie at the seventh but hit his mashie two feet from the pin, how he had holed a four at Maiden, gone out in 33, home in 39.

Jurado finished almost by himself. He stood beside the green while Sarazen and his great gallery came up. Sarazen putted and the ball dropped but it didn’t help— he was two strokes behind. A minute later the people were carrying Hagen on their shoulders to the clubhouse where the Prince of Wales would give him the cup. Hastily Jurado handed in his own score, an 80 that put him in a tie with Barnes for fifth place, noticing as he passed the board that Hagen’s total was 292, Sara-zen’s 294, Archie Compston’s 295.

“We are a little jealous,” the Prince was saying, “but we always want to see the best man win. . . .”

Said British critics of Jurado: “Phenomenal … a fine sportsman. . . .”

More Must-Reads from TIME

Contact us at letters@time.com