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The Match [Paperback]

Mark Frost
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
RRP: 9.99
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Book Description

31 July 2008

The year: 1956. Eddie Lowery, once caddie to Francis Ouimet, now a wealthy car dealer and avid supporter of amateur golf, boasts to fellow millionaire George Coleman that two of his salesmen - US amateur champion Harvie Ward and up-and-coming star Ken Venturi - could beat any golfers in the world in a best ball match. Coleman asks Lowery how he plans to prove it. 'Bring any two golfers of your choice to the course tomorrow morning,' Lowery tells him, 'and we'll settle the issue.' Coleman shows up all right - with Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson, the game's greatest living professionals.

In Mark Frost's peerless hands, complete with the recollections of all the participants, the story of this foursome and the greatest private match ever played comes vividly to life.

Frequently Bought Together

The Match + The Greatest Game Ever Played: Vardon, Ouimet and the birth of modern golf + The Grand Slam: Bobby Jones, America and the story of golf
Price For All Three: 26.52

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (31 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751540404
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751540406
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 19.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 77,403 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Gripping and exceptionally well researched and written (Times)

A fantastic insight into the course and four of the world's greatest golfers (GQ)

Book Description

The definitive account of a little-known but extraordinary match between two golfing legends and two young amateurs on the eve of Bing Crosby's pro-am tournament in 1956.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
By Robert Morris TOP 500 REVIEWER
In The Greatest Game Ever Played, Mark Frost provides a brilliant account of 20-year-old Francis Ouimet's 18-hole playoff victory over Britons Harry Vardon and Ted Ray in the 1913 U.S. Open at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts, where Ouimet once caddied. That said, I think his account of an 18-hole match at Cypress Point Golf Club on the Monterey Peninsula (just before the annual "Crosby Clambake" in 1956) between professionals Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson against amateurs Harvie Ward and Ken Venturi describes a match at least as significant. His is certainly the best book on golf competition that I have ever read.

With the curiosity of a cultural anthropologist and the skills of a master storyteller, Frost establishes and then explores a context within which four of the greatest golfers in the 1950s agreed to a "friendly match." They knew each other, respected each other, and enjoyed each other's company. However, in his own unique way, each was a ferocious competitor, especially when engaged in match play competition. Frost provides a hole-by-hole account (the primary story line) but he also brings to life each of the four competitors, explaining their respective backgrounds, personalities, and motivations while stressing their passion for the game of golf. The supporting cast includes Eddie Lowery who, when years old, caddied for Ouimet during his Open victory and is now a wealthy car dealer and among the leaders of the USGA. Also George Coleman, also a multi-millionaire as well as a member of Cypress Point who accepts Lowery's challenge to select any two professionals to compete against Ward and Venturi.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Golf is a game whose attraction is built in part from legendary events like Ouimet's historic win in Brookline. You need to add this story from Cypress Point to your after-round repertoire.

Two wily veteran pros, Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson, help accept a challenge on behalf of George Coleman made by Eddie Lowery, Francis Ouimet's caddy at The Country Club in the U.S. win, that no one can beat Eddie's two amateur employees, Ken Venturi and Harvie Ward. Bets are placed and the game is on.

To make the story even more interesting, Mark Frost gives us the histories of the people involved against the backdrop of the switch from an amateur focus for the game to a professional one. You'll also learn about how Cypress Point was developed.

Working primarily from the memories of Byron Nelson and Ken Venturi, Mark Frost captures the scene almost as though he were an eye witness. Needless to say, the match contained some remarkable golf. I won't go into it, but I found my heart pounding many times as the competitive situations unfolded in the high stakes Nassau.

I've never seen Cypress Point in person, and the story also interested me for its fine explanation of the course's layout in 1956.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Mark Frost 10 July 2009
Mark Frost is THE MAN to read if you love golf: his writing just brings the characters and places alive in a way that few sports writers can do.

The Match tells of a little known event, played by 4 great players over a great course, for a bet between 2 wealthy men. Promising enough material for a great story, but you come away feeling like you've known the people involved your whole life, such is the thoughtful insight given to their lives.

The description of the match and the course is such that you feel the exitement as if you's nail biting, page turning stuff, and I would certainly recommend this as a present to anyone who likes golf or wants to learn more about the great players of the past.

This is right up their with another great golfing book, Tommy's Honour, and I'd struggle to seperate these 2 books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE MATCH mark frost 9 July 2009
the book THE MATCH by the author MARK FROST, is one of the best golf related books i have ever read. so much so, that immediately after i read the book i went online to find out more about the golf course where the game, that the book is essentially about, was played , and again i found the , ithink, definitive book about that golf course CYPRESS POINT GOLF CLUB in california u.s.a. , whilst i accept that i as an ordinary golfer, will never be allowed to play on these hallowed links, i would like to say to anyone who has not done so, to read the book THE MATCH alongside ALISTAIR McKENZIES CYPRESS POINT GOLF CLUB by GEOFF SHACKLEFORD to gain a small insight into how a great golfer thinks particularly the greatest ever player MR HOGAN
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Match! Compelling 18 Jun 2009
The MatchA thoroughly enjoyable read that many golfers and traditionalists will enjoy. The book is well constructed and a potted history of all the players sprinkles the narrative, which blends well with the tension created. I particularly liked the bit where Ben Hogan arrived at the course and emerged from his car. As his trademark white cap appeared the observers gasped "Hogan" Just like a gunfighter arriving in town. Marvellous! It was a shame that this book was so brief as I felt the tension built well in the swansong of the gifted amateurs days of major participation. Good stuff.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 28 days ago by simon robert ormerod
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good quality
Published 1 month ago by tony mcshane
5.0 out of 5 stars The Match
The match is only a part of the book.
I found the life stories of all the participants (both golfers and those behind the scenes) more interesting than the actual match. Read more
Published 3 months ago by J. Ehle
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read
Enjoyed it even , not just about golf also how the professionals started. Ben Hogan was so brave .Loved it
Published 4 months ago by Angela
4.0 out of 5 stars great read for golf lovers
Brings back an era much missed in today's commercial world. Give it a try and then look at cypress point on google earth and dream.
Published 5 months ago by Geoff Hill
4.0 out of 5 stars Like this sort of book
Haven't read yet but know I'll like it as into golf & it's history (what else can I say, only that to use up the min no. or words !)
Published 7 months ago by Captain
5.0 out of 5 stars must read
If you love golf and its history then this is a great book. Full of inside information too about golf in the past.
Published 8 months ago by Sam
5.0 out of 5 stars inspirational
Mark Frost paints a picture that transports you to the time and place whilst giving you an insight into the people involved, An excellent read
Published 13 months ago by en em 59
3.0 out of 5 stars The Match by Mark Frost
This book was also for my husband, again he said he enjoyed it, but it was not as good as other Mark Frost books
Published on 24 Oct 2011 by F. Whitham
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read
This is an outstanding read especially if you play golf. A great gift for the golfer in your life !
Published on 17 Oct 2011 by haidee
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