Hideki Matsuyama, the 29-year-old prodigy from Japan, left little doubt in the final round of the 85th Masters as he dissected Augusta National and dispatched his nearest pursuers.
Matsuyama, who began the day with a four-shot lead over four players, shot a final-round 73 and finished 10-under par, one shot clear of runner-up Will Zalatoris. Jordan Spieth and Xander Schauffele finished at 7-under, while Jon Rahm and Marc Leishman finished at 6-under.
Matsuyama had a two-shot lead entering the 72nd hole, and when it was over, he hugged his caddie, and the expression on his face was equal parts relief and joy.
He, too, looked a little bit lost without his family greenside on the 18th hole like we often see greeting the winner. Matsuyama’s wife and child were back in Japan watching on TV as the tournament ended at around 8 a.m. Japan time.
“I was thinking about them all the way around today,’’ Matsuyama said through his interpreter. “I’m really happy that I played well for them.’’