The Numbers That Took Matsuyama To Masters Victory

How Japan got its first Masters Champion

We take a look at the numbers that gave Japan its first ever Masters champion
(Image credit: Getty Images)

We take a look at the numbers that gave Japan its first ever Masters champion

The big number for this Masters week was -10 which gave Hideki Matsuyama a one-shot win over Will Zalatoris. We take a look under the bonnet of how the 29-year-old got the job done over the four days at Augusta National.

5.45 Matsuyama gained this many strokes with his approach play in his Saturday 65 which was the best of the lot, nobody else gained even half as many strokes as Matsuyama did.

4 The 29-year-old finished the week ranked 4th in Strokes Gained Approach – five of the last seven winners have ranked in the top five for this category.

2.01 He also gained just over two shots with the putter which was good enough to be the fourth best on the day.

65 His third round was his lowest score in his 10 visits to the Masters. He had a 66 in his closing round in 2015.

0 He was the first player in the tournament to go bogey free for 18 holes (on Saturday), something that was matched by Jon Rahm the following day.

7 This was his seventh bogey-free round in his major career. Since 2015 only Brooks Koepka and Francesco Molinari (with eight each) have more.

50 Matsuyama hit 50/72 greens which left him in fifth spot of those who made the cut. Jordan Spieth (56) found more putting surfaces than anyone else in the field, with his countryman Will Zalatoris in second.

36 He hit 36/56 fairways and crucially the last two. On Sunday he missed just four fairways, bizarrely he only hit 5/14 fairways on Saturday when he was round in 65.

288 This is an odd one with Matsuyama down in third from bottom on the average driving distance list of all the field. Generally speaking he would be in the middle of the pack for this category so we can put it down to hitting a fairway wood on the holes where this is measured.

13 Matsuyama made 13 birdies over the four days and three eagles. There were nine bogeys and, crucially, no doubles.

1 The new Masters champion found sand three times on Sunday and got up and down once, at the 2nd to get his round on track after his opening bogey. He again found sand at 18 but, this time, his putt slipped by, not that it mattered.

1.58 This is his average number of putts per hole which equates to just under 28.5 putts per round. This is an area where he has struggled in recent times but, with 25 putts on Saturday, he was able to keep a check on his closest rivals.

33  This was his 33rd major start including two as an amateur – he was the low amateur at Augusta in 2011 when Charl Schwartzel won.


Mark Townsend
Contributing editor

Mark has worked in golf for over 20 years having started off his journalistic life at the Press Association and BBC Sport before moving to Sky Sports where he became their golf editor on He then worked at National Club Golfer and Lady Golfer where he was the deputy editor and he has interviewed many of the leading names in the game, both male and female, ghosted columns for the likes of Robert Rock, Charley Hull and Dame Laura Davies, as well as playing the vast majority of our Top 100 GB&I courses. He loves links golf with a particular love of Royal Dornoch and Kingsbarns. He is now a freelance, also working for the PGA and Robert Rock. Loves tour golf, both men and women and he remains the long-standing owner of an horrific short game. He plays at Moortown with a handicap of 6.