Jon Rahm wins Masters amidst chaos at Augusta

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Jon Rahm solidified his place among the top golfers in the world in an impressively steady final two rounds at the Masters. A chaotic couple of days due to weather resulted in varying scoreboard combinations. Some of the best players in the field struggled, while others like amateur Sam Bennett made a name for themselves on one of golf’s greatest stages.

The rest of the field

The Masters is one of the greatest traditions in golf, showcasing the world’s best, but making many of them look like average golfers. Rory McIlroy was one of the favorites going in, but missed the cut after shooting 72 and 77 in consecutive days. Justin Thomas also failed to miss the cut. Now former world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler has a consistent but relatively underwhelming performance at Augusta as he finished tied for 10th.

The hype surrounding Tiger Woods is always prevalent early, but he never seemed to get into a rhythm. He barely made the cut, but withdrew following injury flare ups in the third round. Overall, the PGA Tour can’t be thrilled with some of it’s bigger names not showing out well this weekend. Meanwhile, the LIV Tour will be happy as three of the top six included LIV players. Phil Mickelson played out of his mind Sunday, shooting a 65 which was the best score of the final round.

How Jon Rahm secured his green jacket

Rahm didn’t exactly get off to a great start. He immediately four-putted on on the first hole, giving him a double-bogey to begin the first round. He then followed that up with two consecutive birdies which offset the double-bogey. The Spaniard never looked back, as he knocked in five more birdies and an eagle on the par-5 eighth hole to end -7 on the first day. Rahm was tied for the lead with four-time major champion Brooks Koepka.

Round two was steady, as he finished with a 69 and found himself trailing only Koepka. Rahm was saved by the weather on day three as he struggled through the first handful of holes. A weather delay would lead to the resumption of the round, Sunday. Sunday is when Rahm was finally able to overtake the leader, Koepka. Rahm once again, never looked back. He finished the Masters at 12 under par, after playing a bogey-free back nine to finish.

Koepka falters on the big stage

Koepka has had a rough few years ever since his PGA championship victory in 2019. At that point, he had won his fourth major in three seasons, and was arguably the best golfer in the sport. A torn patella tendon in his left knee kickstarted a long journey for Koepka. He reaggravated the injury in hopes to return, while also injuring his hip in 2020. Koepka wasn’t sure if he’d ever play at a high level again when he decided to join LIV golf. They offered him over $100 million, something he couldn’t pass up given his circumstance.

The dark days seem to be over though, as Koepka proved he can still play near the top of his game. It had been a long few years since he’d had a chance to win a major, as the nerves were evident. Koepka followed up rounds of 65 and 67 with 73 and 75 in the last two rounds. Undoubtedly, he didn’t look like himself on the last day. That’s just fine, because what he did do before Sunday was exceptional.

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