Accessibility links

USA

Spieth Collapse Helps Englishman Willet Seize Masters Title

  • Parke Brewer

Danny Willett, of England, celebrates on the 18th hole after finishing the final round of the Masters golf tournament Sunday, April 10, 2016, in Augusta, Georgia.

Danny Willett, of England, celebrates on the 18th hole after finishing the final round of the Masters golf tournament Sunday, April 10, 2016, in Augusta, Georgia.

Danny Willet is only the second man from England to win The Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Georgia.

Willet was one of only two players who managed a bogey-free round on the final day Sunday, shooting a 5-under-par 67. His four round total was also 5-under-par, after he was even par for the first three rounds.

But it was the monumental collapse by defending champion Jordan Spieth of the United States, who had led after each of the first three rounds, that will surely be talked about for years to come.

Spieth, the world's second ranked player, appeared to be in command and enroute to his second straight Masters title after he carded four consecutive birdies to complete the front nine holes in the final round. That put him at 7-under-par and gave him a lead of 5 shots over the 12th ranked Willet with nine holes to play.

But Spieth bogied the 10th and 11th holes and then had a disastrous quadruple bogey 7 on the par 3 12th hole, after hitting his ball into the water twice. He recovered a bit with birdies at the 13th and 15th holes, but had another bogie at the 17th hole that ended his chances after Willet had birdied three of his final six holes.

Spieth ended up tied for second with another Englishman, Lee Westwood, three shots behind Willet at 2-under-par for the tournament. Spieth shot 1-over-par 73 Sunday.

In describing the disastrous holes when he lost his lead, Spieth said, "I think it was really a tough 30 minutes for me that I hope I will never experience again." He added that he "had some weak swings at the wrong time," and is "disappointed."

On the other hand, Willet said, "You can't really describe the emotions or feelings. Fortunately, today was my day. Every time I seemed to make ground, Jordan kept pulling way. It was a surreal day as you looked back at the ebbs and flows."

As the defending Masters champion, the 22-year-old Spieth had what was surely an emotional task of presenting the honorary green jacket to the new champion Willet. Willet also won $1.8 million in prize money.

Little known in the United States, the 28-year-old Willet is the fourth European player to win his first major golf championship at The Masters. The only other Englishman to win The Masters was Nick Faldo, who took the title in 1989, 1990 and 1996.

XS
SM
MD
LG