Which golfer, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus or Tom Watson, has the most holes-in-one?

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Which of my three favorite golfers — Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus or Tom Watson — has the most holes-in-one? 

— Joe Triolo, Rockford, Ill.
 
It’s impossible to say just how many the three have combined to hit in leisurely rounds or during practice time, but here’s what we found: According to his website, Nicklaus.com, Jack has hit 20 holes-in-one in professional competition. Long-time Palmer assistant Doc Giffin calculates that Palmer has had about 20 in his life, although that likely includes non-tournament play. Watson’s number is tougher to pin down — it’s probably around 15 in competitive play — but he did thrill the crowd at the 2011 British Open at Royal St. George’s with a hole-in-one at age 61. You didn’t ask, but Art Wall, the 1959 Masters champion, holds the record; he’s credited with an astounding 45 holes-in-one during his professional career.

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