April 15, 2022 | SPORTS | By Max Giles | Illustration by Iris Guo
For non-golf fans, the term “The Masters Tournament” may hold no particular meaning. However, for golf fans, it is the holy grail of golf tournaments. The Masters is one of golf’s four major championships. Every year, it is played in the same state, in the same town, in the same month, at the same course, and the winner gets the same green jacket.
What makes this tournament so special? Asking a question like that might shatter a friendship among certain golf enthusiasts, so before you do, let me explain.
The Masters golf tournament is the most coveted event in the sport. People travel from all over the world to watch it. Pretty much any golf fan will tell you that if you can only go to one tournament in your life, it’s got to be The Masters. Bobby Jones, a legendary American golfer, set up the initial tournament at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia. To make a long story short, The Masters is a big deal.
The 2022 Masters was dominated by world-ranked No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler, who has made a historic run to the top of the golf world and is being recognized by the game’s greatest players. After the tournament, the legendary Tiger Woods tweeted “Congratulations to Scottie Scheffler on an outstanding win. It’s been a special run.”
Although he may look like your average Joe, his golf game is far from it. At just 25 years-old, Scheffler is one of the youngest players ever to take home the Green Jacket.
Scheffler’s young age revealed itself through his nerves on hole number 18 when he was on the verge of victory. He struggled to put the ball in the hole, earning his first and only double bogey of the tournament.
Despite this hiccup, Scheffler managed to avoid any other major blowups and was able to get away with his mistakes on 18 to secure his major title over second place finisher Rory McIlroy. McIlory couldn’t match Scheffler’s game, despite firing (scoring) a 64 on the final day, tied for lowest-scoring round in The Masters’ history.
At this Masters tournament, there seemed to be a lot of other story lines besides who was in the lead, the biggest being that of Tiger Woods. Just by playing in this tournament, Woods made a miraculous comeback from a car accident that nearly caused amputation of one of his legs.
For the first two days, Woods was in the mix, but he ended up losing that momentum and finishing in 47th place. Despite the low finish, he put out a good showing considering what his past year has been like. The GOAT of golf is still going strong despite everything that’s been thrown his way throughout his career.
Another aspect that made this Masters tournament unique was the purse. Set at a record $15 million, the players had a lot to play for. Scheffler took home the gold with $2.6 million. Close behind was McIlory with $1.6 million. Even Woods, who seemingly had one of the worst performances of his professional career, walked away with $43,000, well above the U.S. median income. It puts into perspective how much these golfers are playing for. One missed putt can cost you a hundred thousand dollars.
In the end, Scheffler took the Green Jacket in the most prestigious tournament in golf. It was a fun one to watch with many twists and turns along the way. Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the tournament is that we should be watching Scheffler’s future as world No. 1, and see what the 25-year-old can do with the rest of his career.