Scottie Scheffler dominates in clinical fashion to win second Masters title

Scottie Scheffler celebrates his win at the Masters golf tournament at Augusta National Golf Club Sunday, April 14, 2024, in Augusta, Ga. (Charlie Riedel/AP)

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Just before Scottie Scheffler, clad in navy pants and a shirt the colour of the peach ice cream sandwich, headed to the first tee of the Masters, a patron holding a blush pink cocktail tapped his friend on the chest with some force.

“It’s Masters Sunday, man,” he said, “I can feel it in my bones.”

The final round of the Masters makes everyone feel a certain kind of way. Only one man can, of course, actually don the Green Jacket. Despite some shaky moments, Scheffler was inevitable. In a close reflection to how the 2019 Masters unfolded for Tiger Woods, the leaderboard went from bunched to broken after one particular hole and Scheffler remained on top.

Scheffler made six birdies in his last 11 holes to win his second Masters in three years – this time by four shots. There was no phone call from his nine-month pregnant wife and no dramatic withdrawal. Meredith Scheffler watched the final round from her aunt’s new home in Dallas with about 10 others and hung on just fine.

There was, by Sunday at dinnertime, just Scheffler dominating in the clinical way the golf world has come to expect – and get used to.

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I will go home, soak in this victory tonight. Will definitely enjoy the birth of my first child. But with that being said, I still love competing,” Scheffler said. “I don’t plan on taking my eye off the ball anytime soon, that’s for sure.”

There was a moment when the tournament is said to truly begin, the second nine on Sunday, when drama with a capital D looked to unfold. By the time the final group got through the par-4 11th, though – ranked the hardest hole on the course this week – there was just one man, Scheffler, left relatively unscathed.

Ludvig Aberg – who, exactly one year ago was playing a collegiate event as a senior at Texas Tech and was playing his first major let alone first Masters – hit it in the water on 11 en route to a double bogey. He shot a 3-under 69 Sunday and ended up alone in second.

Obviously Scottie is an unbelievable golf player, and I think we all expect him to be there when it comes down to the last couple holes of a tournament. He’s proven it again and again, and I think, you know, he makes us better,” Aberg said. “He makes you want to beat him, obviously, and, you know, that’s the same for me and the same for everyone else in this field I think.”

Collin Morikawa, in the final group on Sunday alongside Scheffler, said Saturday that the finale would depend on how “the first five to nine holes go.” Scheffler birdied three on his first nine. Morikawa made double bogey on No. 9 and made another double on No. 11.

Morikawa admitted “greed” got the best of him on Sunday and finished tied for third after a 2-over 74.

“Look Scottie is the No. 1 player in the world for a reason, and what he’s done over the past few years is incredible,” Morikawa said.

Max Homa, who kept holding on and holding on and said Saturday night he was “a dog” who was “ready for this moment” escaped No. 11 with a par but hit it in the bushes on the devilish par-3 12th and made double bogey there en route to a 1-over 73. Still, his tie for third was his best-career result at a major. Homa and Morikawa ended up at 4 under for the week along with Tommy Fleetwood.

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Scheffler won for the third time on the PGA Tour this season and now owns two Players Championships along with his two Masters – the only other people in history to win those tournaments multiple times are Woods and Jack Nicklaus. This was just Scheffler’s fifth Masters tournament, and he became the second quickest to win two Green Jackets. The fastest was Horton Smith – who won two of the first three Masters ever contested.

“The game feels pretty easy when you’re in stretches like this,” Rory McIlroy said of Scheffler’s magical run through 2024.

Each of those in the surrounding groups to Scheffler had their own storyline they were hunting – Aberg is a young killer, having played on a winning Ryder Cup team before teeing it up at a major. Morikawa would have notched the third leg of the Grand Slam. Homa is Golf Twitter’s favourite son and likely the most popular major champion since Woods in 2019 – but Scheffler’s win means 29 of the last 34 Masters winners have now come from the final pairing.

And, as former PGA Tour pro Brad Fritsch wrote on X (formerly Twitter) late Sunday afternoon, “chasing is not easy when you’re chasing the best.”

“The guy is special. He’s a different kind of special. I think we’re all seeing it, and we’re all questioning where did this come from? When he called me, I had no idea he was that good,” Scheffler’s caddie Ted Scott said. “I think his superpower is people that are super powerful are good at everything, and he seems to be good at everything.”

Scheffler had some distance control issues early – and surprisingly that was an issue all week long, hitting 10 per cent fewer fairways than his yearlong average – but managed to sneak a pitch to just a few feet on the par-4 3rd for his first birdie of the day. He gave it right back on the next hole and had another bogey on No. 7. But then his big-time birdie run began on the next hole and there was no looking back.

“I used (that birdie on 8) to birdie 9 and 10 and keep pushing because I knew there was birdies out there on back nine. I had a lot of really talented players trying to chase me down, and I knew pars weren’t going to get it done,” Scheffler said.

Scheffler will become a first-time father in the coming weeks, and he’ll feel that in his bones, for sure. Every single person Scheffler has talked to about fatherhood says it changes your life in the best of ways. 

That’s coming up.

But, for now, the moment is about a Masters victory – again – for the best player in the world.

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