Sealing the deal with a 54-hole lead, Hideki Matsuyama won the 85th edition of the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club on Sunday to become the first player from Japan to claim a men’s major golf championship.
Not only does he hold the title as the 2021 Masters’ Champion, but Matsuyama has also become the first Asian player to slip on a Green Jacket.
He kicked off the day with a four-stroke lead and soon brought it up to six strokes till No. 15 when he found the water. Though nothing seemed like a difficult challenge for Matsuyama, which was largely visible during his birdies at No.9 and No.13.
It wasn’t that luck was on his side, as the 29-year-old golfer has worked hard to reach this pinnacle in his career. He finished in the top five in four majors in 2015-17, garnering fifth place at the Augusta National in 2015, second place in both the U.S. Open and PGA Championship in 2017, then moved on to first place in the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in August 2017.
“Hopefully, I’ll be a pioneer in this and many other Japanese will follow,” Matsuyama told CBS. “I’m proud to be able to open the floodgates, finally, and many others will follow me.”
Matsuyama is the Masters’ sixth first-time winner in the last seven years, following Tiger Woods’ major win in 2019. The golf world has been in a buzz over his final-round score of 73 and 10-under after the four days, with Woods taking to social media to send in his congratulations as he misses this years’ Masters to recover at home from his serious car crash back in February.
Making Japan proud Hideki. Congratulations on such a huge accomplishment for you and your country. This historical @TheMasters win will impact the entire golf world.
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 11, 2021
— The Masters (@TheMasters) April 12, 2021
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