Augusta owes Monty extra shot at the Masters

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The Independent Online

Colin Montgomerie's coruscating attempt to make the first sub-60 on the European tour - he left a 10-foot birdie putt inches short of the cup in the Indonesian Open - was not quite enough to get him into the world's top 50 and earn him an automatic qualification for next week's US Masters.

Colin Montgomerie's coruscating attempt to make the first sub-60 on the European tour - he left a 10-foot birdie putt inches short of the cup in the Indonesian Open - was not quite enough to get him into the world's top 50 and earn him an automatic qualification for next week's US Masters.

It does, though, surely give the committee of Augusta National the chance to prove that American golf can sometimes see further than the veranda of its own country club.

As recently as last autumn, Montgomerie reminded America of the extraordinary range and brilliance of his game in the Ryder Cup. This was after a painful time in his private life.

Montgomerie has, of course, also suffered cruelly on the fairways of the United States, most shamefully in the Ryder Cup at Brookline, Massachusetts.

A special invitation to Monty would be a generous atonement for past sins. It would also be reward for his gritty belief that he can still win a major.

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