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Aussie rules: Scott wins Masters playoff

There had never been an Australian winner at the Masters. On this day, three finished in the top five on the leaderboard at Augusta National.

Adam Scott came out on top of them all on Sunday.

The 32-year-old birdied the second extra hole to defeat Angel Cabrera and win the 77th Masters.

Cabrera's 18-foot birdie effort on No. 10, the second playoff hole, curled around the hole before Scott poured in his birdie try for the win.

"It seems a long way away from a couple years ago here, and even last July when I was trying to win (the British Open). I found my way today. There was some luck there somewhere," said Scott at the green jacket presentation. "I don't how know to digest it all at the moment. It was incredible. It's incredible to be in this position, I'm honored."

Scott, who finished second here two years ago, became the first Australian to win the Masters in what was the first all international playoff in tournament history.

"Australia is a proud sporting nation and this was one notch in the belt that we never got. Amazing that it's come down to me today. Marc (Leishman) and Jason (Day), it could have been any of us," Scott explained.

"There was one guy who inspired a nation of golfers and that's Greg Norman. He's been incredible to me and all the young golfers in Australia, and part of this definitely belongs to him."

Scott birdied the last in regulation for a 3-under 69, and Cabrera also birdied the final hole for a 2-under 70. They ended at 9-under-par 279.

Heading down the stretch in regulation, Scott and Cabrera were tied at minus-8 with one hole to go. Scott dropped his approach to 22 feet on the 18th hole. As he looked over his putt, Cabrera ripped his drive up the fairway off the 18th tee.

Scott, who bogeyed the final four holes to lose last year's British Open, drained his birdie putt to end regulation at minus-9. Cabrera watched from the fairway, then stuffed his second shot inside three feet. The 2009 Masters winner rolled in his birdie putt to tie Scott and force the extra session.

On the first extra hole, Scott's second shot spun off the front of the green. Cabrera did the same with his approach. Cabrera's chip nearly fell into the hole, but stopped a foot behind the cup after skirting the right edge.

Scott's chip settled three feet short. He converted his par putt, then Cabrera kicked his in and it was off the 10th.

Both players found the short grass off the tee on the second extra hole. Cabrera played his second to about 18 feet, then Scott's approach stopped 12 feet right of the hole. Cabrera missed his birdie putt.

Scott didn't miss. His 12-footer rolled into the center of the hole and he raised his arms in celebration of his first major championship.

"The thing I did well today was that I just stayed where I was, wherever it was on the golf course. I just stayed in that one shot," Scott said.

Cabrera was trying for his second Masters title and third major championship.

"I had some issues during the round, but I came back and that's how golf is. I had that chip on 18 that could have won it, but Adam is (true champion)," Cabrera said through a translator. "I would have been happy if I would have won, but he's a great person, a great player. I get along with him as we've been together in Presidents Cups, and I'm happy for him."

Fellow Australian Day posted a 2-under 70 to take third place at minus-7. Leishman, another Aussie, shared fourth with four-time champion Tiger Woods. Leishman managed a 72 in the final round, while Woods carded a 2-under 70. That pair ended at 5-under-par 283.

The two-stroke penalty Woods was assessed on Saturday cost him a share of third, but in reality, who knows how things would have played out if he had started the round two shots behind the leader instead of four back.

"I had a hard time getting adjusted to the speed and that was before the rain," Woods stated. "I struggled hitting the putts hard enough."

Third-round leader Brandt Snedeker faltered down the stretch to a 3-over 75. That left him tied for sixth with Thorbjorn Olesen at 4-under 284. Olesen closed with a 4-under 68.

Scott started the day one stroke behind the leaders, and stayed out of the spotlight until it mattered most. He bogeyed the first, then birdied the third to return to minus-6. The Australian remained there as he parred the next nine holes.

In that span, Cabrera, Snedeker and Day were battling for the lead. Day birdied the first, then holed a bunker shot at the second for eagle to get to 8-under. Snedeker joined him there with an 11-foot birdie putt at the first. Cabrera birdied the second to make it a 3-way tie atop the leaderboard.

As Cabrera and Snedeker walked off the second tee, the rain started. It fell at varying levels throughout the round, but really picked up during the playoff.

Snedeker stumbled to bogeys at four and five, and never threatened again. He played the final 13 holes in 2-over par. Day bogeyed the sixth to give Cabrera the lead by himself.

The Argentine stuffed his approach two feet from the hole at the seventh. Cabrera made that birdie try to go to clear of the field at minus-9. Cabrera's lead moved to three when Day bogeyed the ninth.

The leaders headed to the final nine, where some say the tournament really begins, the second nine on Sunday.

Cabrera's tee shot at the 10th found the right trees and that led to a bogey. He was now two clear of Day, Snedeker and Scott.

Day birdied the 13th for the fourth consecutive round to get within one at minus-8. Scott, who was in the group between Cabrera and Day, also birdied No. 13 to move to 7-under.

Cabrera drove into the trees on the par-5 13th, then found water with his approach. He walked off with a bogey that dropped him one back. Day's drive on 15 hit a tree, but kicked into the fairway.

Day knocked his second on the green and 2-putted for birdie and a brief 2- stroke lead. Scott also 2-putted the 15th to get back within one at minus-8.

At the 16th, Day knocked his tee shot over the green. He 3-putted from the back fringe for a bogey, which dropped him to minus-8 and a share of the lead with Scott.

Cabrera made it a 3-way tie atop the leaderboard with a 22-foot birdie effort at 16. Day dropped another shot at the 17th to slide to 7-under, and it came down to Scott and Cabrera.

"Birdieing 13, 14 and 15 was really nice. Unfortunately, bogeying 16 and 17 was not what I wanted to do. It's really tough. I think the pressure got to me a little," Day admitted.

Scott birdied the 18th, and Cabrera answered. Scott came out on top on the second extra hole and downed his three-time Presidents Cup teammate.

NOTES: Scott earned $1.44 million for the victory ... It was Scott's ninth win on both the PGA and European Tours ... This marked the third straight year the winner has come from outside the final pairing ... In Scott's 12 Masters appearances, this marked the sixth time he was the low Australian ... Cabrera was trying to become the second old Masters champion ... Last year's champion Bubba Watson carded a final-round 77 and finished tied for 50th at 7-over ... Fourteen-year-old amateur Tianlang Guan closed with a 3-over 75 to end at 12- over-par 300, but still won the low amateur honors ... The top 12 on the final leaderboard will be invited back to next year's Masters ... The PGA Tour heads to South Carolina next week as Carl Pettersson defends his title at the RBC Heritage, while the European Tour is in Spain for the Open de Espana, where Francesco Molinari is slated to defend his title.