Wow! If we all had one word to sum up this Masters Championship – ‘Wow’ would be that word. This week had all the pageantry, excitement, big shots, awesome chips, huge birdie putts, disappointing bogeys, controversies, youthful surprises, a couple of senior surprises as well and finally, a suspenseful ending. And after all that, the Green Jacket goes to…Australia’s Adam Scott.
Scott overcame Angel Cabrera in a two hole playoff in a soggy Sunday finish to win his first major championship of a 13-year career. He is the first native of Australia to win a Masters Championship in which there have been great predecessors to attempt the feat including Australia’s legendary golfer, Greg Norman.
Adam Scott began Sunday’s round just one shot behind Angel Cabrera and Brandt Snedeker who were leaders on Saturday evening at 7-under par. A log jam of golfers were just six shots of overtaking them, including Tiger Woods who was just 4-strokes back at three under. And then, the fireworks began.
Jason Day, who was at -5 coming into the final round, jumped out early with a birdie on #1 and an improbable eagle chip from the front bunker of the par 5 second, giving him a lead temporarily. The move had been made but Brandt Snedeker, who is the current FedEx Cup leader, made birdie on 1 also and it was, “Game On”!
Analysts have always said, ‘the Masters don’t begin until the last 9 holes’. I’m a believer! What a great final nine we witnessed. It was a nail-biting contest with Snedeker and Day falling two shots off the lead with Cabrera sitting pretty on top of the leader board at -8 before they reached the 10th hole. At one point, the 43-year old Argentinean and 2009 Masters Champ – Cabrera – had a 3-stroke lead after getting to -9. While this battle was taking place with the focus on Cabrera, Snedeker and Day, no one checked the rearview mirror to see Adam Scott making a run for the lead.
Scott, plodding around a dreary and soggy course, tied Cabrera and overtook him on #18 with a birdie putt to go -9. The pressure was on Cabrera to hit a good drive – he did – and then he stuck his approach shot about 5 feet from the hole. Cabrera then birdied the final hole to send the Masters into extra holes and Scott had to halt his celebration…temporarily that is.
After both players parred the opening playoff hole on #18, the next hole they went to the par 4, 17th where they both hit stellar approach shots with Cabrera putting first. As his putt just missed, slipping by the hole on the high side, Scott made a 15-footer to win it all. He did it. He deserves it. He is this years Masters Champion and had the coveted Green Jacket placed on him in Butler’s Cabin from last years champion, Bubba Watson, who won his first Masters in the same fashion – a putt to win it on the same playoff hole.
This years Masters had it all but in the end, it gave us exactly what we wanted…excitement, drama and another nail-biter. Although my favorite didn’t win, I enjoyed it yet again.
Thank You PGA players and Masters Championship 2013 for continuing to give us your very best. I can’t wait to see what Masters 2014 has in store. Heck, I can’t wait to see what the remaining 3-majors has to offer for this is what we ‘weekend hackers’ live for, right?