GOLF: Adam Scott felt the full force of "what Augusta can do to you" with a failed final day challenge but confident that good things are to come.
The 2013 champ started the final round three shots off the lead knowing he had to "go low' to get himself a second green jacket.
But when his first score movement of the day was backwards, with a bogey at the short sixth, he knew he needed to get a wriggle on.
He clawed back with two birdies on the 13th and 14th before his challenge was sunk with a water-bound second shot on the 15th.
It lead to a bogey and Scott's thoughts looked to next year.
"I was looking for something special today and it wasn't even close," Scott said. "I was fighting and it's hard to feel comfortable all the time out there, especially on a Sunday. So, it wasn't going my way.
"I battled hard and got myself into position on 15 when I had to kind of have a crack, you know, I hit it out to the right and get yourself in a nice position or throw it in there close and make eagle and then maybe birdie two, a couple of the last and finish at 8.
"And I missed by a yard or two and made bogey and then unfortunately bogeyed 17. But it was all over by then."
"Take today away. There are, of course, things to work on, but if I made a lot of errors this week, I felt, because I gave myself so many chances so I've got to take the positive away from that.
Earlier in the day World number three Jason Day failed to make any inroads on the leaders, finishing with a flurry of birdies, but too many opening nine bogeys in his 71.
"Yeah, a couple of birdies was good. Yeah, obviously kind of a touch and go week for me this week. I'm looking forward to coming back next year," he said
Marc Leishman blew out to 11-over after making double-bogey at the opening hole but then went on a great run.
No shot was better however than when he holed out from 136 metres on the seventh fairway for a stunning eagle.
He found another three birdies but then stumbled late on his way to a final 71 which left him eight-over for the tournament.
"Yeah, obviously a disappointing week, but (found) a few more bad positions and where not to hit it," he said.
"The hard conditions the first two days, you play conservative, and yesterday just a bad stretch of holes. And I was hoping to make enough birdies.
"You've got to be hitting perfect shots, otherwise even with the pins involved today, if you're not hitting good shots and you end up outside those holes you're struggling for par."
Amateur star Curtis Luck turned a horror start around with four straight back nine birdies to remain contention for the silver medal for low amateur.
A bogey on 18 dropped him to nine under but the only other amateur in the field, American Stewart Hagestad got the buffer to three shots his way with a birdie at 13 and that's the way it stayed.
Luck will turn pro on Monday (Tuesday AEST), with his first event scheduled for the PGA Tour's Texas Valero Open in two weeks time and knows he'll treat Augusta differently next time he comes, if he gets back.
"The course was so different than what I had imagined. And I think I now have a much better appreciation for how tough it can play," he said.
"I've been, I'm usually a pretty big critic when I watch it on TV and watch any golf on TV. So, now after playing that back nine and through Amen Corner, I have a really good understanding, because I've played it in tournament golf and how tough it can be.
"So, I think that if I ever watch the Masters again from the sidelines, I will not be judging so harshly.
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