Scheffler masters champ again

Agence France-Presse
Scheffler masters champ again
Scottie Scheffler
STAR / File

Top-ranked player 2-time winner at 27

AUGUSTA – Top-ranked Scottie Scheffler dominated a back-nine shootout to capture his second Masters title on Sunday, taking a four-stroke victory at Augusta National.

Scheffler, who also took the green jacket in 2022, won a record $3.6 million top prize after a drama-filled battle with fellow Americans Collin Morikawa and Max Homa and Sweden’s Ludvig Aberg, who made an impressive major debut.

“I can’t put into words what it means to win this tournament again,” Scheffler said.

Scheffler birdied three of the last six holes to fire a four-under par 68 and finish 72 holes over the iconic 7,555-yard layout on 11-under 277 with Aberg shooting 69 to finish second on 281.

Two-time major winner Morikawa had a closing 74 to share third on 284 with Homa and England’s Tommy Fleetwood.

“I did my best to stay calm out there. I tried to stay patient on the course,” Scheffler said. “Was able to make some key shots and key putts to keep my round going.”

Scheffler matched Tiger Woods as the only players to win the Masters twice while atop the world rankings.

He also became the fourth-youngest multiple Masters winner at age 27 behind Woods, Jack Nicklaus and the late Seve Ballesteros.

“Scottie is an amazing golfer,” Homa said. “It’s really impressive.”

Scheffler, who hasn’t played a round over par since last August, has the second-fewest Masters starts for any two-time winner with five. Only Horton Smith needed fewer, taking two of the first three Augusta titles in the 1930s.

Aberg pressured Scheffler down the stretch but could not catch him.

Scheffler had seized a four-stroke edge but made a bogey at 11 while Aberg moved within two with a tap-in birdie at the par-5 13th.

After Scheffler sank a three-footer for birdie at 13, Aberg answered with a five-foot birdie putt at 14 to stay within two.

“It was a dream come true to be in this situation, to feel the pressure coming down the final holes,” Aberg said.

Scheffler responded with a tap-in birdie at 14 and a nine-foot birdie putt at the par-3 16th to secure the victory.

Scheffler was greeted at the 18th green by a standing ovation from spectators delighted by his skilled shotmaking.

A crucial streak of three birdies by Scheffler following a bogey at seven featured his most spectacular shot.

After a 10-foot birdie putt at the par-5 eighth, Scheffler lofted an incredible 89-yard second shot at the ninth that rolled down a slope within inches of the hole to set up a tap-in birdie for the solo lead.

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