Masters 2011 Leaderboard Day 4: Rory McIlroy and Angel Cabrera in the Last Group
Folks, the Masters is all but over and I can tell you definitively who is going to win.
In the last 20 playings of the first golf major of the year, the winner has come from the final pairing 19 times.
That means that either Rory McIlroy or Angel Cabrera will win the Masters tomorrow.
The largest 54-hole deficit to come back and win the Masters is eight strokes, but that was more than 50 years ago.
The largest comeback in recent memory is the Disaster at the Masters in 1996, when Greg Norman alternated making bogeys and vomiting on himself for the entire back nine while Nick Faldo played a flawless round. Norman started the final round with a six stroke lead. When the men embraced on the 18th hole, Faldo had only beaten Norman by 11 strokes for the round to take a five-stroke win and his third Green Jacket.
Even then, Faldo was in the last group with Norman.
McIlroy, who has seemingly had the lead since his plane landed at the airport on Monday, is playing some terrific golf this week. He has only made three bogies in three rounds and the first of those didn't come until the 12th hole on Friday.
Two of those bogies are on two of the hardest holes on the course. The other came today when he tugged his drive on the fifth hole and found one of the very deep fairway bunkers. That was one of the few poor shots he has made this week.
Who do you like to win the Masters?
He is making birdies at an amazing rate. He has made 14 of them, or nearly five per round.
On top of that, he has made a mile's worth of putts, including the gem on the 17th hole today from the back of the green to a front hole location. No one makes that putt.
Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion, shot himself into the final pairing with the youngster McIlroy by firing a smooth 67 on Saturday when everyone else could barely slap their ball around under par.
Everyone, that is, except McIlroy.
Tiger Woods, the four-time winner of this event, followed up a fantastic Friday 66 with a sorry Saturday 74. He couldn't seem to control his iron shots and couldn't buy a putt on Saturday.
Three-time champion Phil Mickelson still seems to be on autopilot. He hasn't played badly per se, but he hasn't played like a man who just shot a third round 63 last Saturday in Houston to charge to the lead. He would go on to win that tournament.
So, we are left wondering who out of the final group will win.
Do you take the guy who has won this tournament before, only two years ago? Or do you go with the kid who is clearly playing the best golf of anyone in the tournament so far?
For my money, I will take a guy who has played three great rounds.
Give me Rory McIlvoy to win his first major.
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