Sunday at the Masters: Tiger Woods Against the World
Sunday at the 2011 Masters started out with South African Charl Schwartzel making two shots from off the green in the first three holes. From there out, he played just well enough to stay in the mix.
Rory McIlroy came into Sunday with a four-stroke lead, and held that lead until the back nine, when the pressure started to set in. Rory had just about the worst start imaginable to the back nine.
Adam Scott took the lead with just a few holes to play, but the 26-year-old Schwartzel made birdies on the final four holes in what was one of the most amazing string of birdies in Masters history.
15. Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy came into the day with a four-stroke lead after leading for the first three days. Sounds like a done deal, right?
The 21-year-old bogeyed one and five, but still held a piece of the lead as he got to the back nine. From there, Rory turned in an epic performance. An epic meltdown.
On 10, Rory hit a tree and kicked back into a house. He went on to triple bogey 10, bogey 11 and double 12.
We all know he has the game, now he has to find out how to hold on to the lead.
7. Angel Cabrera; Argentine Fuerte
Cabrera played good golf all week long, and was in position to win a third major and his second Masters in three years. He even brought his 19-year-old son out to carry his bag, a la Jack Nicklaus 25 years ago.
The two Cabreras were having a good time, and hanging around the tournament on the front nine, but bogeys on 12 and 16 were too tough to overcome.
4. Luke Donald: The Curse Continues
Luke Donald won the par-three contest, and so he should've known he didn't really have a chance to win. Nonetheless, Donald played very good golf, with the exception of a ball in the water on 12.
Once that happened, he was just trying to play catch-up. He finished a few strokes back, and the curse continues. Next year, I bet he doesn't win the par-three.
4. Jeff Ogilvy: Five Straight Birdies
Geoff Ogilvy started off the day seven strokes back and was never really a factor in the tournament.
That is until he hit five birdies in a row, starting on the 12th hole and ending on 16. Had Ogilvy gone on to win, it would be considered as one of the best strings of holes ever played, and the first Masters for an Australian.
This was great golf, but just not quite enough.
4. Tiger Woods Contends, Almost Wins
Tiger Woods played amazing golf on the front nine Sunday, despite a bogey at the par-three fourth. He came in at 31, or five under for the day, and 10 under for the tournament.
But a bogey on 12 and a par on 13 slowed his momentum coming in. He shot 36 or even par on the back.
Is Tiger back? I don't know. If you remember last year at the Masters, he played just about the same as this year. I don't know if he's back—I do know that he likes Augusta.
2. Jason Day: Australia Day?
This is Jason Day's first Masters tournament, and the 23-year-old played like a grizzled veteran. Day started off at minus-seven, and shot one under on the front. He was really an afterthought until he hit birdies on 12 and 13.
Day was lucky with his pairing this week, playing with youngster Rory McIlroy the first three days, and fellow Australian Adam Scott on Sunday.
Day held solid on the back as Scott took the lead and managed to make birdies on 17 and 18 to finish at 12 under.
2. Adam Scott: Almost Enough
Adam Scott played a near perfect Sunday. He started the day off five behind the leader and didn't make too much noise on the front, coming in at two under. On the back, however, he stepped up his game, and took the lead on after a birdies on 10 and 14.
From there, Scott birdied 16 and then struggled on 17, but made par. A birdie try at 18 missed by a few inches, and he had to settle in the clubhouse at minus-12.
That wasn't enough.
1. Charl Schwartzel: Gary Player Is Proud
Charl Schwartzel was known amongst the professional ranks as a player with a lot of game, and a potentially elite quality player. Now the rest of the world knows it as well.
The day started off with a few lucky bounces for Charl as he chipped in on the first hole from just off the green. A couple of holes later, he holed out from the fairway for an eagle.
From there, Schwartzel parred all the way to 15, where he started a string of four birdies in a row. This was one of the most amazing finishes in golf history, and now we get to see just how good this guy really is.