Maestro Olazabal gives himself a lesson at the Augusta Masters

Wait a minute, listen. She was packing her bags when they told her: “You have to play tomorrow!” The cut had gone down and the general bad Friday caused by the storm gave an extra ball to José María Olazabal, whose +6 after a spectacular day – a triple bogey separated him from being one of the fourteen who were under par – was enough to sneak in among the chosen ones. The double champion at Augusta made the cut again after two failed editions, although talking about mistakes at 58 years old would be daring.

«I had already gone home when I found out and was delighted to play one more weekend here. I had the TV on and my caddie couldn’t stand it… but I was totally calm, because I thought I wasn’t going to make the cut; Lorenzo (Gagli, Italian) was much more nervous than me, who wanted to pass it. At one point I went to do some stretching, I stopped watching the tournament, and in the kitchen he tells me ‘if Clark doesn’t make the putt on 17, we’re in.’ And that’s how it was,” said the Gipuzkoan with a laugh at the end of his tour this Saturday.

Olazabal’s lifelong access to these parts is a blessing for the viewer. His figure is greatly respected here. “Mister Olazabal, good morning,” they greet as he passes by. He is, neither more nor less, a legend in the most select club on the planet. Gone are the days when Hondarribia was in the pools, but the fact that he flirts with the aces of the world is a joy. It doesn’t seem like the years pass by him. He retains that putt that made him one of the best in the world and European captain of the Ryder and he had a nice match with Luke List, 19 years younger than him and debutant in the final days of the Masters. The American offered a spectacular birdie to start and could not have had a better teacher.


The Basque golfer, who never loses his smile, only conceded three bogeys (on 4, 5 and 7) to sign a worthy card of 75 strokes. The classification for him is the least important thing, but the fact that he beats players much younger than him is already a victory for someone who competes in the senior PGA circuit, where the tournaments are three days long, like the LIV. He had not played four rounds since the 2021 Masters, along with this edition being the only time he has made the cut in the last decade.

«Everyone who passed behind me was surprised to see me. They would think: ‘And this one plays here today?’ Some have congratulated me, even a young man who I don’t even know who he is. For me, playing here this weekend is an achievement, considering the huge names that haven’t made the cut,” he added. Rahm, whom he hugged affectionately during his victory last year, defined his feat as “amazing.”

2024-04-14 00:08:22
#Maestro #Olazabal #lesson #Augusta #Masters


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