Monday, April 13, 2009

Truly a Final Round Unlike Any Other

In a round that left 2 of the competitors 3 and 4 shots back, it was those 2 that made The Masters Tournament worth watching. It was exactly what the PGA and CBS were looking for. Phil Mickleson and Tiger Woods put on a show all day as Mickleson came out early firing on all cylinders and Tiger Woods started slow but then hit his stride. The beauty was that these 2 players were matched up together on Sunday and in pursuit of the Championship. Unfortunately they began fairly far back on the leader board making it very difficult to make up that kind of ground. These to greats did do their best to erase the deficit and put some serious heat on the leaders Kenny Perry, Chad Campbell and Angel Cabrera. Watching Tiger and Lefty end the front 9 and thru the back nine it was like they were the only 2 players on the course, despite the fact tat they never did even get a chance to tie for the lead. It was some of the most compelling golf with great shots and devastating misses . It had everything except the actual tournament on the line. Strange that 1 super pairing that just didn’t have a shot to win was the best storyline of the final day. Mickleson ended -9 and Tiger ended -8.

Crazy thing about it is the Masters eventually came down to a 3 way playoff between Perry, Campbell and Cabrera. Even with that exciting finish it didn’t have the same buzz that followed Phil and Tiger all day. One could compare it to winning an MVP while being on the loosing team. Each player did all they could to make a poor shot and do their best to give the tournament away in a sudden death playoff starting on 18 then eventually followed it up with a huge save. Campbell was the one exception as he missed a makeable putt that eliminated him from the playoff. Perry and Cabrera moved on to the 2 playoff hole where Perry missed a relatively easy 2nd shot into the green and opened the door wide open for Cabrera, who put his 2nd shot pin high and put all the pressure on Perry to get up and down from just off the green. He was not able and Cabrera held on for the victory. It is too bad, Perry would have been a good story with the chance to be the oldest to ever win a Major. Instead, Cabrera who is, for lack of a better team and interesting character and golfer at best, is victorious and earns the right to go to Butler Cabin and put on that Green Jacket.

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