Masters victor: Patrick Reed outduels Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler for green jacket

Masters victor: Patrick Reed outduels Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler for green jacket

Masters victor: Patrick Reed outduels Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler for green jacket

What many expected to be a battle between the final pair of Reed and McIlroy got off to a shaky start, with Reed's drive finishing close to a tree to the left of the fairway and McIlroy hitting a wild drive to the right. He held a two-stroke lead after the second round and increased that to a three-stroke lead on Saturday. He shot a 69 on the day.

Those shots provided a brief snippet of what might have been at Augusta National had Woods had better control with his irons.

Rory McIlroy could become the sixth player to land a career grand slam today.

"It will be calmer".

"There's a lot of different comparisons you could make".

"You had to ride the momentum and keep it going".

Woods expects to play in all four major tournaments this year. It's going to be electrifying.

Reed went to the back nine with a four-shot lead over four players, and they all had their chances. Once again, the golf world revolved around one man in the days leading up to the Masters.

Then fortune shined on him when his approach to the par-5 13th from 186 yards stayed on the bank fronting the green instead of rolling into Rae's Creek.

A bogey on the third was cancelled out by a birdie on the fourth, but McIlroy also dropped shots at the fifth, eighth and 11th to effectively end his chances as Spieth charged through the field.

Different about this victory for Reed was the fuchsia shirt he wore as part of a Nike script. Reed always wears black trousers and a red shirt because that's what Tiger Woods does, and Reed has long modeled his mental game after Woods.

Beyond that, Reed has a notoriously fractured relationship with his family and, at times, has done little to endear himself to golf fans, including a particularly unsavoury incident when he called himself a "fucking faggot" after a three-putt at the WGC-HSBC Champions Event in November 2014.

A 27-year-old American seeking his first major championship versus a 28-year-old Irishman chasing golf history. "I missed playing major championships".

"I think I've proven to myself and to others that you never give up, " Spieth said. His par should have given Rory encouragement but the Northern Irishman missed his tiddler of a putt.

Reed had his best major finish last season at the PGA Championship where he finished tied for second with Francesco Molinari, just two strokes behind victor Justin Thomas. Reed told him as they exchanged a hug.

A sky-shattering heat-seeking missile, McIlroy really meant business. I hadn't been able to play in it, so now I'm glad I'm competing in this tournament. I feel like my speed's been on point.

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