The 2012 Masters: Thank You, Bubba

Posted: April 9, 2012 in The Masters
Tags: , , , ,

Thank you, Bubba. Just when it appeared we were on the verge of having another Trevor Immelman or Charles Coody donning a green jacket, you stepped up on golf’s biggest stage – with your homemade swing, floppy hair, pink headed and shafted driver and cartoonish shots – and won the Masters.

Things looked bad. Tiger Woods spent the week proving he is now just another really good player. Phil Mickelson was poised for another green jacket until he looked like he was auditioning for a role in The Three Stooges movie with his triple bogey 6 on the par-3 4th hole. Rory McIlroy showed us he still has too many 77s and 76s in his bag at age 22.

Thank you, Bubba, for those prodigious drives on Sunday. Thank you for that birdie run on the back nine. But, mostly, thank you, for the crazy, are-you-kidding-me, snap hook wedge shot you hit from the forest on the 1st playoff hole. How far did you hook it? 40 yards?

This was being billed as the most anticipated Masters ever. There was Tiger’s quest to put himself right back in chase for Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major championships. There was Mickelson’s quest to move up a notch among the list of greatest players ever. There was Rory’s quest to prove he is now the measuring stick for greatest in professional golf. All three went to Augusta playing well and full on confidence.

Only Mickelson delivered. Incredibly, he was in the hunt in spite of two triple bogeys. He almost overcame the first that came on Thursday at the 10th. The second, this one on Sunday, eventually left him tied for 3rd.

The remainder of the field provided plenty of thrills, none bigger than Louis Oosthuizen’s double eagle 2 on the par-5 2nd. It vaulted him into the lead and the South African, a former British Open champion, refused to wilt. Oosthuizen has a picture book swing and a pleasant, gap-toothed smile, but he rates low on the charisma scale. His biggest misstep came on the 1st playoff hole when he followed Bubba’s wayward drive with one of his own. Louie couldn’t match Bubba’s recovery shot, but in his defense, who could?

The other contenders have impressive resumes, but little entertainment value. Swede Peter Hanson, Englishman Lee Westwood and American Matt Kuchar knocked but could quite get through the door.

It was up to you, Bubba, and you managed to hold back the tears and keep your hair out of your eyes long enough to get the job done.

Bubba, not only did you win Sunday, so did golf. Like all types of entertainment, golf needs personalities or characters or celebrities or what ever you want to call them.

Thanks again, Bubba. Now go have a good cry so you’ll feel better.

 

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