David Duval, Ernie Els, Tiger Woods, Tom Lehman, Davis Love III, Phil Mickelson, Hal Sutton . all had their chances. Singh finally won because, like the old saying goes, he played the best on the back nine Sunday. He won by three shots, partly because of sparkling play, partly because of good old-fashioned luck.
Woods made a dramatic effort, but two wayward shots in the first round cost him dearly - a double bogey at No. 10 and a triple bogey at No. 12. That placed him far back and he had a little too much ground to make up to make it a win in all the majors in one year.
Sunday at the Masters was a day when anybody could have won, but only one actually did. Singh's playing partner, David Duval, repeatedly thrusted and parried at the lead, but the Fijian - and Dame Fortune - thwarted him at every turn.
It started at the sixth with Singh clinging to a one-shot lead. Duval rolled in a 10-foot birdie. But Singh came right back to answer him with an eight-footer. At the par-5 eighth, Duval hit a nifty little pitch to four feet. But here came Singh, missing badly on a 20-foot eagle to can a three-foot breaking birdie.
Singh buckled somewhat on No. 11 when he sent an approach shot into the pond, but he was permitted to drop just short of the green and escaped with a bogey. And at the par-3 12th he airmailed the green, but instead of being in jail alongside Duval, the ball kicked out to a cushy lie in a back bunker.
Finally, at the par-5 13th, it turned with finality when Singh safely reached in two shots while Duval was hitting a 5-iron fat and into water. That two-shot swing when Duval was in second and mounting a serious charge was the final hurdle. Singh now led by three shots.
Singh made all the big putts coming home on Augusta's tricky greens, and the long-suffering Fijian romped home a winner.
Full Coverage of the 2001 Masters Tournament