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The Masters...Sunday afternoon Drama

Charl-schwartzel-masters-winner Rorry McIllroy played some brilliant golf, but  Green Jackets are not issued for brilliant Thursday to Saturday play.  His performance yesterday illustrated for millions of golf fans the pressure that exists on Sunday afternoons at Augusta National. To use a boxing analogy, it appeared like McIllroy was knocked down after that opening bogey and never regained his senses. He staggered through the final 17 rounds.  Moreover, after that 10th hole triple bogey, the refs should of stopped the fight on a TKO. A little melodramatic perhaps…but that’s what the golf gods gave us yesterday. And in the end the drama revolved around  a triumvirate of characters, Rorry, Tiger and Charl.

Yesterday was one of them good days for watching sports.  And although my refrigerator was desolate and uninspiring, thus eliminating my snacking options and detracting from the festivities, the sports menu offered enough courses to divert my attention --- albeit temporarily.  Therefore I indulged in various baseball and basketball games -- one that featured a grudge match between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics.  Ordinarily, I’m all locked into a contest of such magnitude, but yesterday I couldn’t commit--it was all about the Masters and the drama it offered, let’s face it…Tiger was on the prowl.

Tiger Woods is still the show in golf. Let’s be very clear, there is nothing bigger in professional sports than Tiger in the mix on a Sunday afternoon of a major.  For the naysayers, you need to go no further than the CBS ratings for proof of his impact.  I’m almost certain—as certain as the silly relentless stories you’ll  hear or read on his return to prominence today, that last year’s 12.0 ratings share will pale in comparison to yesterday’s compelling final act at Augusta.

Overall, Tiger played well yesterday; he managed the court well by staying in the fairways and operating in the greens with the precision of a surgeon.  Yet, he still was off his “A” game…he couldn’t make key putts, thus "he left too many points on the field", in football speak. That eagle putt that burned the lip on the 15th hole would go on to haunt him. Never the less, as good as Tiger’s play was yesterday, he stumbled on the back nine like wounded prey in the Serengeti, allowing the rest of the field a chance for the kill.

Charl Schwartzel, closed out the final four holes with birdies….that’s big time…and well deserving of the Green Jacket.  Throughout the afternoon, the young gun of South Africa, on the left side of 30—stayed on his grind. His play was not spectacular, but he was rock-steady,  "make the pars and take advantage of birdie opportunities” is the mantra on Sundays.  Today you’ll hear people attempt to diminish his achievement by saying "Tiger lost the Masters." Nah….it wasn’t his to take. It was Adam Scott’s.  But Charl’s had other plans….he took it on that final four close out.

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