Chinese Taipei star CT Pan is looking forward to another crack at Augusta National Golf Club after securing his place in the 2021 Masters Tournament with a superb joint seventh finish in this year’s rescheduled event, which ended on Sunday.
Pan, who turned 29 last Thursday, shot an impressive final round 68, which featured four birdies over his closing six holes, to sign off his debut Masters appearance on 10-under-par 278 – 10 strokes behind winner Dustin Johnson, who claimed his first Green Jacket with a tournament 72-hole record of 20-under-par 268. It was the best result in 10 Major appearances for Pan and also his first top-10 on the PGA Tour in nearly 18 months.
Pan was delighted to return to form as he has struggled since his breakthrough win at the RBC Heritage in 2019. “It feels great. I struggled the whole year, so this is definitely a big step up for me and a big confidence boost,” he said.
With his controlled play, even-keeled temperament and hot putter, Pan brilliantly navigated his way around Augusta National and birdied all the par-fives before concluding his day in style with a late burst of birdies, highlighted by a monster putt from 28 feet on the 17th hole. He agonisingly missed an eight-footer on the last hole but it did not take away anything from a terrific first Masters appearance.
What was especially satisfying for Pan was the fact that the top-12 finishers and ties earned places in the 2021 Masters. With next year’s tournament returning to its original slot in April, Pan is already looking forward to a quick return.
“As far as this being my first Masters, I enjoyed it very much. T7 in my Masters debut. That means I’ll be coming back to Augusta National in April. Can’t wait to make the drive up Magnolia Lane in five months,” he said.
Pan’s noted that he and wife Michelle really enjoyed being at Augusta National for the fabled tournament. “I love the food here. It’s great. I just want to thank Augusta National for everything. After long debates with my wife, I want to say egg salad sandwich is our favourite. I’ve tried the pimento cheese, egg salad, the burger, the grouper sandwich, the fried chicken sandwich, all the sandwiches I could get. I tried them all!”