Willett Wins the 2016 Masters Tournament After Spieth Loses It

2016 Masters winner Danny Willett after receiving the Green Jacket
Danny Willett won the 2016 Masters Tournament, and his final-round outfit went great with the Green Jacket. Andrew Redington/Getty Images

For 65 holes of the 2016 Masters Tournament, it appeared that Jordan Spieth would win his second Green Jacket in a row, becoming just the fourth back-to-back champ in Masters history.

Spieth During the 2016 Masters Tournament

With nine holes to go, in fact, it looked like a virtual lock for Spieth.

But then a combination of Danny Willett's excellent play down the stretch and one disastrous hole by Spieth instead made Willett the winner.

Willett ranked 12th in the world rankings going into the tournament, became just the second English golfer to win at Augusta National. (Nick Faldo was the first, and Faldo won three times.)

Spieth broke and challenged all kinds of records in winning the 2015 Masters wire-to-wire. At the 2016 tournament, he appeared on his way to doing the same thing.

Spieth opened with a 66 to take the lead. A second-round 74 left Spieth with a 1-stroke lead over Rory McIlroy, setting up a much-anticipated Spieth-McIlroy pairing in the final group of Round 3.

That pairing didn't live up to the hype, alas, as McIlroy struggled to a third-round 77.

Spieth shot 73 in Round 3, but a double bogey on the 18th hole left him with a one-stroke edge over Smylie Kaufman. Fifty-eight-year-old, 2-time Masters champ Bernhard Langer was tied for third, two behind Spieth. Jason Day and Dustin Johnson were three back, tied for fifth place with Willett.

At that point, Spieth was the first golfer in Masters history to have the outright lead in seven consecutive rounds.

And he kept and expanded that lead over the front nine of Round 4, birdying Holes 6 through 9. When Spieth made the turn, he led by five strokes. Another victory seemed almost a foregone conclusion.

Almost. But Spieth bogeyed No. 10 and again on No. 11. Then, disaster: He caught his tee shot on the par-3 12th hole fat; it hit the bank in front of the green and bounced back into Rae's Creek.

Spieth dropped another ball, then badly chunked that shot into the water, too. His third attempt (his fifth stroke with the penalties) was over the green into a bunker. He got up-and-down for a quadruple bogey 7.

Spieth dropped from 7-under to 1-under over the 10th through 12th holes.

How Willett Won the 2016 Masters Tournament

Willett, meanwhile, was going in the opposite direction. Playing a couple groups ahead of Spieth, Willett birdied the 13th and 14th holes and was in the lead at 4-under. He added another birdie at the 16th to reach 5-under.

Lee Westwood and Dustin Johnson were briefly in the mix, but couldn't stay there. Kaufman and Langer had long ago collapsed; Day never mounted a charge.

Spieth tried to recover and birdied the 13th and 15th holes, but a birdie miss on 16 and bogey on 17 sealed his fate.

Willett closed out with two pars and donned the Green Jacket as 2016 Masters champ.

This was the final Masters played by 1991 Masters winner Ian Woosnam, and also by Tom Watson, winner of the 1977 Masters and 1981 Masters.

There were three holes-in-one made on the 16th hole during the final round, tying the record for most aces in a single Masters. One of them was by Louis Oosthuizen, joining the double eagle he scored in 2012.

2016 Masters Tournament Scores

Results from the 2016 Masters golf tournament played April 7-10 at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga.:

Danny Willett 70-74-72-67--283 $1,800,000
Lee Westwood 71-75-71-69--286 $880,000
Jordan Spieth 66-74-73-73--286 $880,000
Paul Casey 69-77-74-67--287 $413,333
J.B. Holmes 72-73-74-68--287 $413,333
Dustin Johnson 73-71-72-71--287 $413,333
Matthew Fitzpatrick 71-76-74-67--288 $311,667
Soren Kjeldsen 69-74-74-71--288 $311,667
Hideki Matsuyama 71-72-72-73--288 $311,667
Justin Rose 69-77-73-70--289 $230,000
Daniel Berger 73-71-74-71--289 $230,000
Rory McIlroy 70-71-77-71--289 $230,000
Brandt Snedeker 71-72-74-72--289 $230,000
Jason Day 72-73-71-73--289 $230,000
Kiradech Aphibarnrat 72-72-77-70--291 $175,000
Louis Oosthuizen 72-77-71-71--291 $175,000
Rafa Cabrera-Bello 74-73-75-70--292 $145,000
Danny Lee 68-74-79-71--292 $145,000
Emiliano Grillo 71-75-74-72--292 $145,000
Billy Horschel 70-77-73-72--292 $145,000
a-Bryson DeChambeau 72-72-77-72--293
Brooks Koepka 73-72-76-72--293 $116,000
Jamie Donaldson 74-72-75-72--293 $116,000
Henrik Stenson 72-75-78-69--294 $89,000
Bill Haas 75-74-72-73--294 $89,000
Matt Kuchar 75-73-72-74--294 $89,000
Angel Cabrera 73-73-73-75--294 $89,000
Bernhard Langer 72-73-70-79--294 $89,000
Webb Simpson 77-72-74-72--295 $68,000
Scott Piercy 70-72-79-74--295 $68,000
Charley Hoffman 71-77-73-74--295 $68,000
Jimmy Walker 71-75-74-75--295 $68,000
Smylie Kaufman 73-72-69-81--295 $68,000
Sergio Garcia 69-75-81-71--296 $56,500
Kevin Streelman 71-75-79-71--296 $56,500
Bernd Wiesberger 73-72-79-72--296 $56,500
Bubba Watson 75-75-76-71--297 $50,250
Kevin Kisner 77-72-76-72--297 $50,250
a-Romain Langasque 74-73-83-68--298
Justin Thomas 76-73-78-71--298 $46,000
Shane Lowry 68-76-79-75--298 $46,000
Victor Dubuisson 73-76-76-74--299 $37,000
Troy Merritt 74-71-79-75--299 $37,000
Anirban Lahiri 76-73-75-75--299 $37,000
Harris English 74-73-76-76--299 $37,000
Adam Scott 76-72-75-76--299 $37,000
Davis Love III 73-73-76-77--299 $37,000
Chris Wood 72-73-75-79--299 $37,000
Ian Poulter 69-78-82-71--300 $27,467
Martin Kaymer 74-75-79-72--300 $27,467
Patrick Reed 76-73-75-76--300 $27,467
Larry Mize 76-73-78-74--301 $24,900
Keegan Bradley 74-73-77-77--301 $24,900
Hunter Mahan 73-75-78-76--302 $24,000
Kevin Na 72-74-85-72--303 $23,400
Cameron Smith 74-73-82-74--303 $23,400
Thongchai Jaidee 72-76-81-78--307 $23,000

2015 Masters | 2017 Masters

Return to the list of Masters winners