Vintage Nick Faldo crushing drives on the way to winning a third straight Irish Open in 1993 📽️ pic.twitter.com/DVRsEtx0cC— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) May 20, 2020
The lean years had hurt, but they also forged Faldo into a Major winner with a strong mind and a resolute swing.
He has been criticized for his on-course demeanor, but in his prime Faldo was an intimidating opponent and being paired with him in a final round was a nightmare prospect, as evidenced by the pride Curtis Strange holds for his defeat of Faldo in an 18-hole playoff at the 1988 US Open.
The golden years
Faldo again proved his mental strength at the 1989 Masters when he claimed his second Major Championship in a sudden-death playoff against Scott Hoch.
In spite of that, an aggressive approach gave him a 25-foot birdie putt to win the Masters and, in fading light, he holed it, etching his name into Augusta folklore.
The Ryder Cup
His decision to play Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood - the two most successful Ryder Cup players on his team - only once in the Saturday session drew particular criticism.