Masters: Final grades for Augusta
An epic few holes from Adam Scott and Angel Cabrera late on Sunday afternoon saved the 2013 Masters.
We came within one hole of having one of the most unfortunate Masters in years. Decades, maybe.
|More on the Masters|
|More golf coverage|
The 72nd hole (and 73rd and 74th) on Sunday saved us from weeks and weeks of talk about how the 2013 Masters was tainted by Tiger Woods' two-stroke penalty from Friday afternoon (are we still calling this DropGate? TigerGate? PinGate?).
The Masters is golf's grandest event, the purest of its four major championships. So it was perfect that Adam Scott and Angel Cabrera played three of the purest holes that you'll ever see to end the tournament.
It was beautiful theater, and it started with a bomb on No. 18 from Scott to take the one-shot lead on Cabrera. There was never a doubt on his putt, either -- it never left the cup.
And, in a chilling moment after the putt went in (not just because of the cold rain), Scott turned to the crowd and screamed "COME ON, AUSSIES!" before destroying caddie Steve Williams' right hand with a high-five.
Cabrera followed that up with an incredible iron shot just four feet from the pin. He knocked it in for birdie and a playoff.
The two played No. 18 to par, but Scott birdied No. 10 on the second playoff hole for the win and let loose a crushing yell that rivaled his one on No. 18.
It made everyone forget that they could have been watching Woods in a playoff if not for that silly pin on No. 15.
Woods finished just four shots back. If not for a perfectly struck ball by him -- if it was just one inch to the right or to the left -- that hit the pin on No. 15 on Friday, he would have likely birdied or parred the hole and could have easily found himself in the playoff with Cabrera and Scott.
But that's golf. Inches either way can turn majors.
So, thank you to Scott and Cabrera for playing such a classic last three holes and reminding us that this tournament isn't about who loses but about who grabs the experience and basks in it.
It's about who comes up big on Sunday afternoon.
On a day that lacked drama for much of the round, we were reminded, as we always are, that the Masters doesn't start until the final two pairings reach the 72nd hole on Sunday.
Or is it the second nine on Sunday?
Either way, thanks for overshadowing Tiger.
Here are our final grades for the 2013 Masters.
The next season of golf has a real chance to be one of the best any of us has ever seen
This season will fascinate as old stars converge with up-and-coming superstars
With a single golf lesson up for auction, Tiger Woods changed some lives forever in Texas this...
The Days have had a rough 2017 from beginning to end
Why in the world would a former FedEx Cup winner hop on 24 hours worth of flights this wee...
Following the debacle at the ANA Inspiration earlier in 2017, Thompson has some thoughts