Scott Tops Cabrera in Sudden-death Playoff to Win Masters

Adam Scott won the 2013 Masters, held at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., in one of the most exciting golf tournaments in recent memory.

Scott won in a thrilling, sudden-death playoff against Angel Cabrera, finishing at nine-under par to become the first Australian to win the Masters. Scott, 32, and Cabrera, 43, entered the 18th hole in regulation tied at 8-under as rain poured down on the golf course.

Scott birdied the 18th hole to take a momentary one-stroke lead until Cabrera hit a tremendous second shot a few minutes later on the 18th to set up his own birdie and force a playoff. The two golfers first replayed the 18th hole, with both players making par to set up a second playoff hole at the 10th green. Cabrera’s birdie attempt fell inches short of the cup, and Scott won the tournament moments later with a clutch birdie putt.

Tiger Woods, the name most familiar to the general public, finished tied for fourth at 5-under. His tournament will be most remembered for the controversy in the second round at the 13th hole. Woods hit the flag pole with his third shot, yet in a stroke of bad luck the ball bounced out of the hole and rolled into the water hazard several yards away. Woods then took a two-stroke penalty drop, meaning he replayed his shot from as close to his previous shot as possible. However, it was clear from the television camera angle that Woods had not dropped his ball as close as possible to where he first hit.

Woods was assessed a two-stroke penalty before the third round began, but he was not disqualified because of a new rule. Some skeptics, however, believe he wasn’t disqualified because he’s Tiger Woods and a Masters weekend without him would have caused a sharp drop in TV ratings and viewer interest. 

Another notable story was 14-year-old Tianlang Guan from China, who became the youngest golfer to ever make the cut at the Masters and finished the tournament at 12-over.  Overall, this year’s Masters was riveting, enthralling and enjoyable, three adjectives not often used to describe golf. Here’s to hoping the U.S. Open can provide similar entertainment.