Michael Block: did American golfer hit hole in one at the PGA Championship 2023 - and who hit the last one

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Brooks Koepka winning his fifth golfing major at Oak Hill Country Club was not the only incredible sporting moment of the tournament

The huge crowd of spectators at this year's PGA Championship in New York were not only treated to a sporting icon's triumphant return to the winners circle, but a spine-tingling hole in one that many have dubbed the best in the history of golfing competition.

This year's tournament drew to a close at Oak Hill Country Club on Sunday (21 May) in a closely-contested final stage. Viktor Hovland, who had led proceedings a number of times across the three-day event, as well as Scottie Scheffler did all they could to push the eventual winner Brooks Koepka.

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Koepka returned to the summit of the sport four years removed from capturing his last major trophy at the PGA Championship in 2019. He scored consecutive 4-under 66s to storm past an elite field, finishing with a 67 on the final day to etch his name alongside Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus as players to win three or more PGA championship titles.

But the American's triumph is not the only sporting moment that golf fans are taking away and treasuring following the conclusion of the PGA Championship. St Louis native Michael Block, who was a relatively unknown quantity before the show got underway, hit a fairytale hole-in-one that left fans at home and watching live on TV in pandemonium.

Here is everything you need to know about Block's hole in one at this year's PGA Championship. Plus more about the golfer himself - and who the last player was to hit a hole in one at the competition.

What happened when Michael Block hit a hole in one?

Block lit up the final round of the competition when he hit what is now regarded as one of the greatest hole in ones in the history of professional golf. The American aced the par three 15th to go from two over to level par, but it was his approach to the 150-yard hole that had fans gasping in awe and exploding in celebration.

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The St Louis native was partnered up with Northern Irish icon Rory McIlroy, who high-fived him after the club pro's shot fell straight in without touching the green, not a single bounce or even kissing the pin.

Reacting to the moment on social media, one fan posted: "I jumped up then yelled then threw my water bottle that exploded all over my new TV and not sure why. Haha, that was amazing," as a number of others demanded him to "get a tour card" after hitting "the best hole in one ever".

Block went on to finish in the top-15 on one over par, sinking a tricky putt to par the 18th. He completed rounds of 70, 70, 70 and 71.

Who is Michael Block?

Block is an American professional golfer from St Louis, Missouri and is 46-years-old. He was an unknown quantity ahead of the PGA Championship 2023 and was one of the 20 players to quality for the event via the PGA Professional Championship in May which he tied in second-place.

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After playing college golf for Mississippi State and transferring to the University of Missouri, Block started as an assistant pro at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in California, where he still works but now as a head pro. He charges those interested in learning from him $125 per lesson and $500 for a nine-hole experience.

Michael Block celebrating his hole in one at the PGA Championship 2023 with partner Rory McIlroy - Credit: GettyMichael Block celebrating his hole in one at the PGA Championship 2023 with partner Rory McIlroy - Credit: Getty
Michael Block celebrating his hole in one at the PGA Championship 2023 with partner Rory McIlroy - Credit: Getty

Talking ahead of the PGA Championship 2023, Block told US broadcasters: "The old Arnold Palmer, ‘Swing your swing,’ is a huge thing for me. I don’t teach one way. I teach what that person has the capability of doing and learning, and that’s been a huge benefit of teaching for the last 25 years for me.

“I’m not trying to teach anybody Tiger’s or Rory’s swing, because that’s just not going to happen. So you’ve got to be realistic with what you’ve got. That’s a big thing. I try to be honest with my guys. The first couple years, you’re out there and you’re winging it, and telling everybody the same thing. Once you get confident in your teaching and your playing, it just gets better."

Who was the last person to hit a hole in one at the PGA Championship?

Block's hole-in-one, which was the only one of this year's tournament, was the first by a club pro at a PGA Championship in nearly 30 years. Michael Bowman struck perfection back in 1996.

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