Youngest Player To Win The Masters

Several fresh-faced players have worn the Green Jacket, but Tiger Woods holds the record as the youngest with his 1997 win

Tiger Woods receives the Green Jacket from Nick Faldo after winning the 1997 Masters
(Image credit: Getty Images)

For many players, winning The Masters would mark the pinnacle of a long career. For example, that is surely the case for Mark O'Meara, who became the oldest player to claim the title for the first time aged 41 years, three months in 1998. 

However, there are others who have won the Green Jacket early in their careers, to the undoubted envy of many who try for decades to claim the title.

In 2022, Scottie Scheffler became the latest relatively young player to win The Masters, aged 25 years, nine months. Still, even that was over four years older than the youngest player to lift the trophy. That honour belongs to Tiger Woods, who blew away the field in 1997 to win by 12 shots over Tom Kite aged just 21 years, three months and 14 days.

One other player has come close to beating Woods’ tender age to win the tournament since that occasion. When Jordan Spieth lifted the trophy in 2015 he was aged just 21 years, eight months, confirming the arrival of another major talent to the game. While Spieth was already too old to beat Woods' record that year, he came close to beating it the year before, and would have done so had he edged out Bubba Watson. In the event, he had to settle for a tie for runner-up. 

Behind Spieth, in third-place, stands Spanish legend Seve Ballesteros, who won the title just four days after his 23rd birthday in 1980.

Of course, following his 1997 win, Woods went on to have a glorious history in the tournament, with five Masters titles to date. Indeed, if we're counting players twice, Woods would also hold the seventh place in the list for his 2001 victory aged 25 years, three months.  Meanwhile, to demonstrate Woods’ longevity, he is also the second oldest to win The Masters behind Jack Nicklaus, after he claimed his 15th Major win to date in 2019 aged 43 years, three months.

For many, though, that 1997 win will remain a defining moment when the fresh-faced prodigy announced himself on the world stage and changed the trajectory of the game forever.

Mike Hall
News Writer

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.