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Cabrera Almost Gets Second Green Jacket
Angel Cabrera is a warrior. The burly 43-year-old Argentine - whose two victories on the PGA Tour are majors - was the only player to post four under-par rounds at Augusta National in the 77th Masters, and he almost got a second green jacket to join the one he earned in 2009.
Cabrera carded two birdies on the front nine to rise into a share of the lead with Jason Day, but stumbled on the par-4 10th and par-5 13th, the latter being especially painful. But he birdied two of the final three holes, capping those off with a brilliant, gutsy approach on the par-4 18th to two feet, making the birdie putt to tie Adam Scott and send the tournament to extra holes.
After both players parred the first sudden-death hole, the 18th, they went to the 10th. Putting first, Cabrera's birdie try from 15 feet just rimmed the cup. Scott, about three feet closer, then rolled his birdie attempt in to secure the first win for an Australian in Masters history.
Afterward, Cabera met with reporters. Through an interpreter, the Spanish speaking player - whose caddie was his son, Angel Jr. - discussed what transpired Sunday.
MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, it's a privilege to welcome the 2009 Masters champion, Angel Cabrera. To finish today with four birdies, the most memorable of which came on the final hole of regulation. This week, he carded rounds of 71, 69, 69 and 70. Angel, congratulations on a fantastic competition today.
ANGEL CABRERA: Thank you very much.
MODERATOR: Would you like to make any remarks?
ANGEL CABRERA: Well, it was the type of round that I expected. I expected to score under par today, and I did, and I was able to get into the playoff.
Q. How close was the putt on the second playoff hole? It's hard to tell on television; inches, just on the edge?
ANGEL CABRERA: I think it almost hit the edge of the hole.
Q. What was the club and distance on the last hole?
ANGEL CABRERA: 163 yards, 7 iron.
Q. Can you just tell us what went through your head, coming so close on 18 and then coming close again on 10 in the playoff?
ANGEL CABRERA: The only one thing in my head was about winning.
Q. Did you feel unlucky today with the putts that were all over the hole and just wouldn't go in?
ANGEL CABRERA: Yeah, that's golf. Golf gives and takes. So yeah, sometimes you make those putts, sometimes you just miss them. But that's golf.
Q. Coming next, do you think that this is going to give you more confidence and maybe win some more majors in the future?
ANGEL CABRERA: Certainly this helps, especially going for the rest of the season to keep on playing and try to win, yeah, for all of what is remaining of the year.
Q. How much did your experience as a past Masters champion help you in the final group today?
ANGEL CABRERA: Yeah, I had a lot of peace of mind and I was very confident. I knew that it depended on me. I knew that they can make some birdies, but I still was thinking that it depended on me.
Q. Given your past experience as a Masters champion and a major champion, how do you expect Adam Scott's life to change now having won his first Masters?
ANGEL CABRERA: Well, it's going to change quite a lot, his life. He's been looking for it, searching for it, this major title. He's achieved it, so I'm pretty sure his life is going to change really fast right now.
Q. In 2009 you won in a playoff; did you have flashbacks today?
ANGEL CABRERA: No, I wasn't thinking about that at all. I was very much into today's playoff. I played very well both holes. I wasn't lucky, but I was very much into this playoff.
Q. Seemed to be a nice spirit of sportsmanship in the playoff; how much experience have you had playing with Adam Scott before?
ANGEL CABRERA: Yes, I had, you know, the chance to play along with Adam. And, well, unfortunately in playoffs, it's one on one, head to head. And there's got to be only one winner, and he was able to win.
Q. You've been able to rise to the occasion a lot in majors; why do you think that is?
ANGEL CABRERA: I like the challenges, and so these tournaments are very, very important for me. So sometimes they take my best out of me.
Q. Do you think that anchored putting that is supposed to be banned in 2016, that that was a factor in having Adam winning in this tournament?
ANGEL CABRERA: No, I don't think there is any advantage. If it really is an advantage, why don't everybody play it? So, you know, I'm just happy for him.
Q. Can you talk about your decision at 13? You had the lead and decided to go for it in two off the pine straw; tough shot.
ANGEL CABRERA: Yeah, I had a very good angle, and I had a very good lie. And I was thinking about making a birdie. I told my son that, you know, we could do an eagle, also.
Q. Can you explain, please, how you managed to climb back from that extraordinarily low position you were in the world rankings?
ANGEL CABRERA: A lot of work and a lot of faith in myself. I have a lot of confidence in myself, and so I'm going to keep on going.
Q. When you hugged Adam, you spoke to him for several seconds; could you share with us what you were saying, besides congratulations, obviously.
ANGEL CABRERA: That I was happy for him; that I know that he deserved it, and that he was going to eventually win it like he did right now. It was just a matter of time.
Q. Today Roberto De Vicenzo, it's his 90th birthday, and it's exactly 45 years since he signed an incorrect scorecard and lost the Masters. What do you have to say about that?
ANGEL CABRERA: Just to wish him a very happy birthday, and I hope he can live for long so we can have Roberto along with us for a long time.
Q. With Angel Cabrera, and congratulations. You played brilliantly down the stretch. Tell us about that last putt that almost went in.
ANGEL CABRERA: You know, that's how golf is. I had some issues during the course, but that's how golf is. I had that chip on 18 that I could have won it, but Adam is a truthful good winner.
Q. I could tell that you were happy for him because you know, you've experienced this kind of moment, you know what a life changer this is.
ANGEL CABRERA: Yeah, obviously I would have been happy if I would have won. He's a great person, a great player. I get along with him. We've been together in Presidents Cups, and I'm happy for him.
MODERATOR: Well done, thank you.
The transcript for the above interview is courtesy of ASAP Sports.