FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sunday, April 11th, 2021

NOTES AND QUOTES – LIVE FROM THE MASTERS ON GOLF CHANNEL (FINAL ROUND)

“It’s been an incredible eight days, not just for golf in general, but more specifically golf in Japan.” – Brandel Chamblee

“He’s going to be a popular commodity come August when we’re there for the Olympics.” – Justin Leonard on Hideki Matsuyama

“They’ve come tantalizingly close to having major championship wins…Now finally, we’ve seen someone climb the highest mountain in golf.” – Chamblee on a Japanese Men’s Golfer Winning the Masters

STAMFORD, Conn. – April 11, 2021 – NBC Sports presented final round Live From the Masters coverage from Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., today and in primetime tonight on GOLF Channel. Hideki Matsuyama won his first Masters championship, marking his first major title, and becoming the first Japanese man to win a major championship.

The Masters – Final Leaderboard

Player Total
Hideki Matsuyama -10
Will Zalatoris -9
Jordan Spieth -7
Xander Schauffele -7


On Hideki Matsuyama (10-under, 2021 Masters champion)

Justin Leonard: “He earned it. He earned it with his play yesterday afternoon, he earned it with superior ball-striking, an incredible short game…Can’t imagine, as golf crazy as the nation of Japan is, they’ve had a pretty good eight days…To have Hideki Matsuyama win the Masters, of all the majors, he’s going to be a popular commodity come August when we’re there for the Olympics.”

Brandel Chamblee: “It’s been an incredible eight days, not just for golf in general, but more specifically golf in Japan — to see Tsubasa Kajitani win the Augusta National Women’s Amateur as a 17-year-old, and to see Hideki Matsuyama become the first player from Japan to win a major championship and win the Masters.”

Leonard on Matsuyama’s iron play: “It’s elite and has been consistently elite for a number of years…The level of consistency is hard to fathom he’s been that good for that long.”

Chamblee: “In general, the scrambling of Hideki Matsuyama was top-notch…Sort of quietly, he’s been one of the best scramblers on the PGA TOUR over the last three years, but this particular week, only one player in the field managed to get it up and down more often than he did.”

Rich Lerner: “It’s been said that through the years, the Masters doesn’t start until the second nine on Sunday. I think he won the Masters with what he did on the second nine on Saturday…That bought him margin for error and he needed every bit of it coming down the stretch today.”

Lerner: “What this Masters may have lacked in raw, white-knuckle, birdie-eagle excitement, it made up for in significance — Hideki Matsuyama becoming the first male player from Japan to win a major championship.”

On the importance of a Japanese golfer winning the Masters

Chamblee: “They’ve come tantalizingly close to having major championship wins…Golf in Japan is a frenzied activity…They love their sport…Men on a big stage winning one of the biggest events, they’ve been teased and now finally, we’ve seen someone climb the highest mountain in golf.”

Rex Kuramoto: “Men’s golf has been behind ladies golf because (Hinako) Shibuno won the (Women’s) British Open two years ago, and since that time, golf in Japan, the ladies have come first…But Matsuyama winning this Masters changes everything — Matsuyama will be the guy.”

On Will Zalatoris (9-under, 2nd)

Leonard on what’s most impressive about Zalatoris: “He’s got an impressive golf game, obviously. Great ball-striker. The distance that he hits the ball for not being a big guy with long arms or anything, it’s quite remarkable, but also kind of his mental outlook. He wasn’t shocked or surprised or overwhelmed to be here. He looked very comfortable out there yesterday, he looked comfortable again today.”

Chamblee: “It’s not often you see a rookie come along with a talent this luminous from a ball-striking standpoint, but that alone is not unique, right? It happens…In general, I’d say it’s his ability to treat every round as if it’s the same, and be the same every single round…His strategy, his ability to think properly under pressure at such a young age, those two are extraordinary.”

On Xander Schauffele (7-under, T-3rd)

Leonard: “The lessons he’s learning because he’s in the thick of the battle and in contention, they’re hard ones…He seems to hit a poor shot or (make a) bad decision at the wrong time…I think he’s becoming tougher through this process and that will serve him well down the road.”

–NBC SPORTS–