Offered here is a truly stunning find - an actual golf ball used by Tiger Woods during the final round of the 1997 Masters Tournament. Even better, this ball comes with impeccable provenance. Unless Tiger himself or his caddie Fluff intentionally saved a ball from this historic final round (which we doubt), this may be the only confirmed golf ball from the final round of Tiger Woods' first Major Championship victory.
Our consignor, Julian Nexsen, was 9 years old in 1997. The Greenville, SC native was attending the 1997 Masters with his father and some family friends. They were stationed between the 5th green and 6th tee box as Tiger Woods was walking by during his final round. Tiger had just bogeyed the 5th hole - his first bogey in over 36 holes. As he walked to the 6th tee box, Tiger handed the young Julian Nexsen his golf ball - presumably retiring the one he just used to bogey hole #5.
The young boy was elated - Tiger Woods had just handed him a golf ball. Dozens of people witnessed Tiger Woods hand that golf ball to Julian Nexsen, including a reporter from the Washington Times. That reporter, Barker Davis, immediately came over and spoke to Julian Nexsen and his father. The next day, The Washington Times front page featured an article titled Tiger Woods completes rout at Masters. In that article, Davis states:
After making his first bogey in 36 holes yesterday, Woods stopped on his way to the sixth tee to give a ball to 9-year-old Julian Nexsen of Greenville, S.C.
That reporter sent the young Nexsen a copy of that Washington Times newspaper, which his parents then shadow box framed with the Tiger Woods golf ball, his badge from the 1997 Masters Tournament, and a couple pairings sheets from the Sunday Final Round. These items have been framed together ever since.
Adding to the provenance, Julian Nexsen has graciously signed a legal Declaration in which he certifies under penalties of perjury as to the authenticity of this Tiger Woods 1997 Masters golf ball and the story of that Final Round interaction with Tiger Woods.