April 11, 2011

schwartzel There’s a reason why the old adage says the Masters doesn’t really start until the back nine on Sunday. What an incredible viewing experience Sunday’s round was. Even with four holes to go, there were no less than ten – count ’em, ten! – golfers with a real shot to win. When commentator David Feherty said at some point he had no clue as to how this Masters was going to play out, he was only echoing the words of everyone who was watching at the time. As a sports spectacle it doesn’t get a whole lot better than that, with positions changing almost with every shot and drama after drama unfolding as Rory McIlroy imploded, then Tiger made his move, only to miss some golden chances to take a commanding lead, then Adam Scott making his move, taking the lead on 15 only to see ultimate champion Charl Schwartzel reel off birdies on the final four holes – something that had never been done before in the final round, ever – to stave off a charging Jason Day to win the green jacket.

It was amazing television to watch: at one point I went out to cook a couple of burgers and dogs for Tracey and me, only to come in fifteen minutes later and find an entirely different first page of the leaderboard staring me in the face.

This is why the Masters is what it is – the major of all majors. You have the combination of the best players in the world on a course set up perfectly for Sunday dramatics. There’s a lot of risk and reward involved out there, and not a whole lot of room for error. Which is why, say, even someone like Tiger Woods who was seven strokes back after the third round still felt like he had a chance on Sunday. And he almost made the most of it.

Hard not to feel bad for Rory McIlroy, who put up a big number today, but he’s young and after a few days he’ll start sorting out what went wrong on Sunday and learn from it. By and large, he drove the ball beautifully most of the day, but, like they say, drive for show, putt for dough, and he putted poorly all day. But that’s what the pressure of the final at Augusta will do to you.

There will be lots written about this Masters in the coming days, and unlike most other sporting events, this one will deserve every word. Very seldom do sports events live up to the hype, but today at the 75th Masters most certainly did, in every sense of the word.

Filed in: Golf & Sports by The Great White Shank at 00:40 | Comments (2)
2 Comments »
  1. You may be the only person on the planet who can describe golf as a sports spectacle….

    Comment by Jana — April 11, 2011 @ 5:09 am


  2. I feel for Rory. He’s young and I hope he has the capacity to overcome this. Everyone chokes at one point or another in their lives. Everyone. Some shake it off, others never do.

    Comment by Rob — April 11, 2011 @ 9:42 am


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