Masters attracts fans world-wide

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News 12 at 11 o'clock, April 12, 2008

AUGUSTA, Ga.---The Masters tournament brings in players from all over the world. With those players, come fans from all over as well.

"I think every golf fan dreams of coming here, the chance to walk through Amen Corner," said Dan Nicholl. It's his first time at the Masters. He came all the way from South Africa, a 28-hour trip.

"When you've got the prospect of seeing the world's best golfers playing at the world's best golf course, it's definitely worth the trip," he said.

Part of what makes it worth it for him is seeing players from his home country. He says some of his best moments have been watching fellow South African Gary Player competing in his 51st Masters, and seeing native newcomerTtrevor Immelman hold the lead.

"It was fabulous watching him and I'm very proud of South African golf," he said.

And others are very proud to see their flags flying over the Masters leaderboard as well. Of 94 players in this year's Masters, 43 come from countries outside the U.S.

John Perris came from London. He's here to cheer on Lee Westwood from England but placed bets both on him and a fairly famous American.

"He could just do it, but I still think Tiger Woods will still pull off a miracle," Perris said.

One couple from Ireland didn't mind the rain, except that their ponchos kept them from showing of their Irish pride. When Martin Turley lifted up his shirt, he revealed a shirt with the word "Ireland" on it.

He and his wife Bernadette came to the Augusta National to follow Padraig Harrington, but say no matter how well he does, they're happy to have seen the course.

"Best in the world. We've got some beautiful courses in Ireland but Augusta speaks for itself," he said.

"You've got a lovely part of the world. There is a magic about the Masters that very few sports events can replicate," Nicholl said.

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