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Scottie Scheffler cruises to second Masters victory

Scottie Scheffler cruises to second Masters victory

Scottie Scheffler lived up to his billing with a four-shot victory at the Masters Tournament to win a second Green Jacket in three years at Augusta National Golf Club.

Scottie Scheffler

The World Number One drove down Magnolia Lane as a big favourite and after an opening 66 and rounds of 72 and 71 in the tougher windy conditions, he entered the final day with a one-shot advantage.

A slightly shaky start meant there was a four-way tie at the top but a hat-trick of birdies from the eighth steadied the ship and after coming through Amen Corner in level par, Scheffler pulled away to sign for a 68 and finish at 11 under.

Swede Ludvig Åberg carded a 69 to be the nearest challenger at seven under on his Major Championship debut, three shots clear of Ryder Cup team-mate Tommy Fleetwood and American duo Max Homa and Collin Morikawa.

Scheffler arrived in Georgia on the back of finishing first, first and second in his last three starts, with top 20s in each of his four Masters appearances including his win in 2022.

As well as the favourite's tag, he also had the possibility of having to withdraw mid-event with wife Meredith expecting the couple's first child imminently but he took it all in his stride and produced one of the most dominant Masters performances of recent years.

"It's a very special time for both of us," he said. "I can't put into words what it means to win this tournament again. I really can't put into words what it's going to be like to be a father for the first time. I'm looking forward to getting home and celebrating with Meredith. It's been a long week here without her but I'm just looking forward to getting home.

"I will definitely enjoy the birth of my first child but with that being said, I still love competing. My priorities will change here very soon. My son or daughter will now be the main priority, along with my wife, so golf will now be probably fourth in line. But I still love competing. I don't plan on taking my eye off the ball anytime soon, that's for sure.

"It's been a long week, a grind of a week. The golf course was so challenging, and to be sitting here wearing this jacket again and getting to take it home is extremely special. I will go home, soak in this victory tonight."

Scheffler needed to get up and down to save par on the first and second and did the same from the sand on the driveable third for a birdie and a two-shot lead.

He missed the green again on the next to drop a shot and when he found sand on the seventh for another bogey, he was in a three-way tie at the top.

While Scheffler's playing partner Morikawa made seven consecutive pars, Åberg holed a 22-footer on the par-five second to get up and down for birdie and then hit a beautiful approach to four feet at the seventh.

A deft chip on the second had handed Homa a birdie and after bogeying the seventh following a poor tee-shot, he made a two-putt birdie on the par-five eighth to make it a four-way tie.

In the final group, Scheffler made a smart up-and-down and Morikawa hit a beautiful pitch after being forced to lay up as both men took advantage of the eighth but ahead at the ninth, Åberg holed a 36-foot breaking right-to-lefter to keep pace.

There was then a three-shot swing, with Scheffler setting up a tap-in birdie and Morikawa making a double-bogey after leaving a ball in the sand on the ninth, while Homa got within one thanks to an approach to three feet at the tenth.

But Scheffler was relentless, putting his second to nine feet at the tenth for a third birdie in a row and a two-shot lead heading into Amen Corner.

As always, it had its say, with Åberg making a double after finding water on the 11th and Homa making one of his own after putting his tee-shot into a bush on the 12th.

That meant Scheffler led by three despite dropping a shot himself on the 11th and he safely navigated Golden Bell with a par.

Åberg and Scheffler both made two-putt birdies on the par-five 13th and a pair of gains after pinpoint approaches on the next as Åberg provided the only resistance, but Scheffler would not be denied, putting his tee-shot to nine feet on the 16th as he cruised to victory.

Morikawa made another double-bogey on the 11th but picked up shots on the 13th and 15th before a bogey on the last saw him sign for a 74, while Homa bogeyed the 17th in a 73.

Fleetwood made birdies on the first, seventh and 13th in a bogey-free 69 to finish two shots clear of Bryson DeChambeau and Cameron Smith, with Xander Schauffele the only other player in red numbers at one under.