1964 US Amateur

William “Bill” Campbell won the 1964 US Amateur Championship at Canterbury Golf Club.  He did it on his 21st try. A career amateur and gentleman of golf the in the truest sense, Campbell has the distinction of being the only man to be both a President of the USGA and a Captain of the R & A during his life.

But when he came to Canterbury in 1964, he had his sights set on the Havemeyer Trophy. Campbell qualified for match play with rounds of 72 & 74 for a 146 total.  It was just three shots behind co-medalists Vinnie Giles & Bob Greenwood who each shot 143 in the 36-hole qualifier.

Once in match play, the veteran Campbell called on experience to guide him through three 1up victories over his first four matches. Then after defeating Texan John Hopkins 3&1 in the semifinals, Campbell would be matched up against friend and long-time rival Ed Tutwiler to decide the Championship. Campbell and Tutwiler had never met in the US Amateur match play, but they had met an unbelievable 7 times in the finals of the West Virginia state Amateur. Tutwiler had dominated, winning 6 of the 7 times. Campbell, when asked about how he felt upon reaching his first US Amateur final in 21 years said, “How would you feel if you finally made it, then found yourself up against a fellow who has made a career out of beating you.”  

The 36-hole final match appeared to be going the way of most Campbell vs. Tutwiler matches had gone with “Tut” leading 3 up after 10 holes.  However, Campbell charged back with 4 one-putt greens on the back nine to square the match after 18 holes.  During the 2nd 18, an incredible 15 holes where halved. Tutwiler broke though first with a birdie at the par 5 9th to take a 1 up lead.  But, Campbell squared the match back up with a long birdie putt at the par 3 11th hole. Campbell then won the 17th hole with a par to gain his first lead of the afternoon.  Then after Tutwiler’s 15 foot par putt just missed on the final hole, Bill Campbell was the champion.

Bill Campbell went on to play in 37 US Amateurs, including 33 in a row, 8 Walker Cup teams, 15 US Opens and 18 Masters Tournaments.  But, his victory at Canterbury in 1964 was his crowning achievement on the golf course.