Dustin Johnson has won the 2020 Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia, scoring 20 below par, setting a new record on Sunday. The 36-year-old is the 12th player to win without ever trailing at the end of any round. Sunday’s tournament was postponed this spring due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Johnson tapped in for par on the 18th for a 4-under 68 to finish at 20-under 268, breaking by two shots the record set by Tiger Woods in 1997 and matched by Jordan Spieth in 2015.
Johnson, the No. 1 ranked golfer in the world, claimed his second career major on Sunday after wining the 2016 U.S. Open. He had also won the FedEx cup in September.
Cameron Smith (69) and Sungjae Im (69) were second at 15 under. Justin Thomas was fourth at 12 under.
Dustin’s brother, Austin, accompanied him at the tournament as his caddy — and CBS Sports captured this touching moment where Austin became emotional after Dustin’s last putt. “I’ll remember this the rest of my life,” Dustin explained of sharing the winning moment with his brother.
Johnson was presented the Masters green jacket by defending Masters champion Woods.
Johnson overcame a jittery start that conjured memories of past majors he failed to finish off. He turned that into a command performance, making sure this one-of-a-kind Masters with no fans also had no drama.
Not even close.
His five-shot victory was the largest at the Masters since Woods won by 12 in his record-breaking win in 1997. All that was missing were the roars for any of his pivotal putts early and his birdie putts on the back nine that put it away.
The Masters was forced to do without patrons for the first time because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Johnson still received a warm reception coming up the 18th from club members and their wives, his partner, Paulina Gretzky, and a few champions.
Two-time champion Bubba Watson was there to congratulate him.
“I always dreamed of having one of those,” Johnson said as he went to sign his card. “Now I got one.”
Johnson’s four-shot lead was reduced to one after five holes, and then he quickly restored control.
During a live TV interview on CBS Sports after his Masters win, Johnson was emotional and took the moment to say Sunday was a “dream come true.” He added: “As a kid, you’re dreaming about winning the Masters, having Tiger put the green jacket on you. I’m here and what a great feeling it is. I couldn’t be more excited.”
No one had a better finish than Woods, but only after the five-time Masters champion posted the highest score of his career — three balls in Rae’s Creek for a 10 on the par-3 12th hole. He finished with five birdies over the last six holes to salvage a 76.
The betting favorite and biggest basher in golf, Bryson DeChambeau, couldn’t even beat 63-year-old Bernhard Langer, who shot 71 and wound up one shot ahead of the U.S. Open champion.
Even with a record score, and the widest margin of victory since 1997, it didn’t mean it was easy for Johnson — because after all, who for all his talent has dealt with more than his share of misfortune, not all his own doing.
He was the 16th player to take at least a four-shot lead into the final round of the Masters, and only four had failed to win, most recently Rory McIlroy in 2011.
That lead was down to one shot after five holes.
From short of the bunker on the par-5 second, Johnson muffed his flop into the bunker and had to scramble for par at the easiest hole on the course Sunday. After he settled himself with a birdie on No. 3, he came up short of the green and took three putts for bogey, then found a fairway bunker off the fifth tee, had to lay up and made another bogey.
Im started with two birdies in three holes, and saved par with a fabulous flop over a bunker behind the fifth green. Suddenly, he was one shot behind. Ahead of them was Smith, suddenly two shots behind.
Just when it looked as though Johnson might he headed to a meltdown, it all changed on one hole.
Johnson’s tee shot to a pin on the top-right shelf at the par-3 sixth settled 6 feet away for birdie. Im chipped from just behind the green to 3 feet and missed the par putt. Johnson’s lead was back to three.
Then, with Johnson blocked by pine branches and having to punch low into a front bunker at No. 7, Im from the fairway sailed the green into a bunker, blasted out through the green and made bogey.
Smith was still within two shots when they made the turn, and the wind was stronger that it had been all week, but the Aussie could manage only one birdie, and by then it was too late.