Fred Couples Becomes Oldest Player In History To Make The Cut At The Masters

The 63-year-old has beaten the record set by two-time winner Bernhard Langer in 2020

Fred Couples takes a shot during the opening round of the 2023 Masters
Fred Couples has become the oldest player to make the cut at The Masters
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The 2023 Masters is delivering more than its fair share of surprising stories, including Brooks Koepka opening up a sizeable lead at the top of the leaderboard in defiance of suggestions LIV Golf players would be rusty.

Then, there has been the emergence of the man not far behind him, amateur Sam Bennett, following his bogey-free second round. And what about the performance of Rory McIlroy after the World No.2’s ninth attempt to complete a career Grand Slam ended with a missed cut?

However, one of the feats that’s been both unexpected and impressive is the performance over the first two rounds of Fred Couples, and it will surely stand among the sweetest achievements of his Masters career.

That’s because Couples has become the oldest player in the tournament’s history to make the cut, aged 63 years, six months and six days.

That beats the record previously held by two-time winner Bernhard Langer, who achieved the feat in the 2020 Masters aged 63 years, two months and 17 days.

Couples didn’t just scrape over the cut line, either – he did it with a little room to spare. After a one-under opening-round that included four birdies on the back nine, the veteran explained it left him in with a good chance of making the cut. 

He said: "I would think, if you are playing when I did and you're a really, really good player, if you shot par, you'd probably feel okay about it because you're not out of it. For me, you know, I'm shooting as low as I can just to shoot as low as I can to hopefully make the cut." 

While his second round wasn’t quite as impressive, he still finished with a [two-over 73 to head into the third round on one-over. Players are still on the course completing their second rounds but he looks guaranteed to make it through.

Whether Couples is able to climb the leaderboard on Moving Day is almost beside the point. The fact he is there at all is an achievement. It’s also one likely to live long in his memory, even for a player with a victory among 11 top-10 finishes since his first Augusta National outing way back in 1979.

Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.