Sacre majeur et sacré retour: World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler reported in favor of the Masters, they are premiering Grand Chelem, on April 10 in Augusta, and Tiger Woods reussi they are for a return to the competition thirty months after they are car accident.
The 25-year-old American, 19me and 18me of the last two editions, he finished with a score of -10, three shots ahead of Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy, author of a fantastic but useless comeback and who will wait to add the only remaining Major to his collection. Australia’s Cameron Smith and Ireland’s Shane Lowry, tied for third, finished within five points.
“I can’t put into words what it means to me to know that I can come back here for life,” said Scheffler, after his predecessor, Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama, made him wear the traditional green jacket reserved for winners. After this prestigious success, the fact that he turned professional in 2018 confirms his current supremacy on the North American PGA Tour, where he played 64 tournaments in three seasons.
However, the Ridgewood, New Jersey, native’s rise is meteoric. Winner of the US Junior Amateur in 2013 (which Tiger Woods or Jordan Spieth had won at the time) even before entering college (during the four years of his career, he will be offered three tournaments in the raised championship called the Big 12), he He only won his first tournament two months ago, at the Phoenix Open. He then followed up, winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Florida on March 6, and the WGC World Match-Play Championship in Austin, Texas on March 28. The cherry on top of this victory, the 25-year-old Texan, who spent 15me on February 6, he then stole the world number one spot from Spaniard Jon Rahm.
So the pressure was on his shoulders heading into Augusta, although Woods’ spellbinding comeback took most of the attention and left him somewhat on his own. But it was only worth the time of 48 hours, because as of Friday, the one who was part of the American team won the Ryder Cup in 2021, even featuring the Spanish Jon Rahm, the number ‘in the world! – He was already flying over the debates and was ahead by five lengths after 36 holes. Saturday was his toughest day, with Cameron Smith closing within three points.
And even just one, after two successful birdies by the Australian during these 4me piano tour initiated by Scheffler, who among his manifest qualities possesses that of an unbreakable composure. He witnesses this extraordinary birdie at No. 3 thanks to a perfect chip on the mound. “I was surprised. I didn’t expect to see the ball go in. It was the kickoff for me,” he said.
This masterstroke also knocked out Smith somewhere. For he at the same time he conceded a bogey on this hole, thereby returning three units behind. It was the beginning of the end: three more bogeys followed and even a double bogey at N.12 of the Amen Corner, where the Masters was effectively lost and won. Scheffler overcame these difficulties without incident, after a new birdie at N.7. But Rory McIlroy, author of an exceptional last lap, appeared like a bullet in his rearview mirror.
Woods: ‘It was amazing’
Not content with having returned an unblemished card, the Northern Irishman notched a sumptuous eagle on the N.13 and his sixth birdie of the day, bunkering off the N.18 that melted the crowd around him. His card of 64 (-8) is the lowest achieved on a Sunday by Augusta. He and second-lowest in tournament history behind Nick Price and Greg Norman, who had done even better years earlier (-9).
In this N.18 where he had already won the tournament, after two consecutive birdies on N.14 and N.15 that gave him a five-shot lead over McIlroy, Scheffler faltered for the first time in four days, betrayed by legitimate emotion. He double bogeyed after two curled putts at the rim came off. He put his right hand to his mouth, but it didn’t tremble to finally get it over with, to the cheers of the audience.
An audience that two hours earlier had reserved others as vibrant for Tiger Woods. His +13 score, the lowest in 24 starts, obviously didn’t count. Because this extraordinary champion, who was about to have his right leg amputated in February 2021, had just achieved one of his greatest feats there. “I don’t think words can describe how I felt. It was amazing,” said the Tiger, happy to roar again.