On Sunday, Adam Scott, 32, became the first Australian to win the Masters. The major golf tournament is played every year at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia. Until Scott’s win, Australia had nine runners-up at past Masters but not a single winner.
The 2013 tournament ended in a two-hole playoff between Scott and Angel Cabrera of Argentina. Scott won by sinking a 15-foot birdie putt on the second hole of the playoff. Jason Day finished in third, two strokes behind Cabrera.
“This is the one thing in golf that we had not been able to achieve,” Scott said in a press conference after his win. “It’s amazing that it’s my destiny to be the first Aussie to win.”
Getting the Green
The Masters tournament is one of four major championships run by the Professional Golf Association (PGA). There are many traditions that go along with the Masters. As with other tournaments, the winner receives a purse, or cash prize. This year, Scott will take home more than $1.4 million dollars for his win.
The Masters’ most famous tradition may be the green jacket. Since 1949, a green jacket has been awarded to the champion. The winner of the previous year's Masters puts the jacket on the current winner at the end of the tournament. The winner must return it the clubhouse one year after their victory. A golfer who wins the event multiple times uses the same green jacket from his initial win, unless he needs to be re-fitted with a new one.
Playing by the Rules
The 2013 Masters caused many people to break out the rulebook. In the second round, golfer Tiger Woods took a penalty drop after one of his shots hit the flagstick and rolled into the pond. A viewer at home saw the shot and called the Georgia golf club to tell officials that Woods had not dropped the ball in its original spot. The Masters committee reviewed the move but did not think Woods had dropped the ball illegally. In a post-round interview with ESPN, Woods admitted to dropping the ball "2 yards further back" from the original spot. The committee penalized Woods two strokes on Saturday morning.
China’s Tianlang Guan, 14, had a minor penalty but it didn’t overshadow his achievements. Guan became the youngest player to compete in any major tournament in 148 years. On Friday, he received a one-stroke penalty at the 17th hole for slow play. His penalty almost kept him from continuing in the tournament. But Guan went on to win the Silver Cup. The award is given to the amateur who takes the fewest number of strokes to complete the course.
After the day’s events, Guan told the press he respected the penalty. For him, it was more about the experience than the score. "As I say, I'm not going to push myself too hard,” he said. “I'm trying to just enjoy my game, play my best, and hopefully play some good score.”