Watson upbeat about Masters prospects

Sat Apr 12, 2014 9:19pm EDT
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By Julian Linden

AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) - Bubba Watson was feeling good about his chances of winning a second Masters title despite squandering a sizeable lead in Saturday's third round, and for good reason.

After starting the day three shots in front then extending his lead to five strokes early in his round, the American's advantage quickly whittled away.

By the time he got to the 18th green, he needed to make a clutch putt to save par and finish tied for the lead with Jordan Spieth, the baby-faced 20-year-old who is bidding to become the youngest Masters champion.

"If this is my worst day, I'm still tied for the lead," said Watson, who followed up his previous rounds of 69 and 68 with a 74. "I have a great shot for tomorrow.

"If somebody told me I would have shot two-over and still be tied for the lead, I would have taken it in a heartbeat."

"If I shoot 90 tomorrow I still have a green jacket."

Having already won the title, Watson said he was not under pressure to win again. The American claimed the coveted green jacket two years after a sudden-death playoff with South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen.

Faced with a seemingly impossible shot from deep in the woods, the left-handed Watson pulled off one of the most remarkable strokes seen in a major golf championship when he bent the ball around the trees and on to the green on his way to a par that clinched the title.   Continued...

U.S. golfer Bubba Watson waits to putt on the seventh hole during the third round of the Masters golf tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia April 12, 2014. REUTERS/Jim Young