Masters Puts Tourney Coverage Online - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

04/07/06

Masters Puts Tourney Coverage Online

Golf lovers who can't make it to Augusta this weekend will have to wait till the afternoon to watch live coverage of the Masters tourney. If, that is, they plan to watch it on TV. Now for the first time ever, fans can get all the action live on the internet, starting much earlier in the day.

Coverage started at 10:45am this morning at www.masters.org. And we're not talking about some little webcam on the green. We're talking a full television-quality production, with multiple cameras, graphics, and live announcers.

"It looks great," said golf fan Jeff Wilder when we caught up with him today at Savannah's Southbridge Golf Club. "It's awesome to be able to keep up with those guys."

The magic happens in Augusta, where crews from IBM work to bring the tournament alive online.

"Augusta has always been really innovative when it comes to technology and the way their course is displayed in a variety of different venues," said the company's project manager, Elizabeth Hammer. "And they came to IBM and asked what we could do to get 'Amen Corner' on--[holes] 11, 12, and 13--and we're working in conjunction with CBS to make that happen for them."

Fans say it's a natural move for sportscasting in the new millennium.

"I think it is," said Wilder. "I think as more and more people have access to the internet and, you know, as you get into your fantasy sports leagues and that sort of thing, where people are more interested in not only watching the final round, but the whole thing, they want access to be able to keep up with it all the time, and this gives them that opportunity to do it."

From player stats to the sights and sounds of golf, the Masters is not missing that opportunity.

You can watch live over the weekend at www.masters.org for free.

Reported by: Charles Gray, cgray@wtoc.com

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