Bubba Watson targeting Ryder Cup glory to banish 'Miracle at Medinah' memories

Watson was part of the losing US team in 2012 but will head to the Ryder Cup with momentum after winning his second Green Jacket at Augusta last weekend

Bubba Watson joined Tom Watson in becoming a two-time Masters champion with his impressive victory at Augusta National on Sunday.

And now the world number four is focused on helping United States captain Watson end Europe's dominance of the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles in September.

Europe have won seven of the last nine contests, including the memorable 'Miracle at Medinah' in 2012 when Jose Maria Olazabal's side came from 10-6 down on the final day in Chicago.

Watson was on the losing side on that occasion, recording two resounding victories with former US Open champion Webb Simpson in the fourballs, but losing on the 18th to Justin Rose and Ian Poulter in foursomes and to Luke Donald in the opening singles match.

The 35-year-old also suffered a narrow defeat at Celtic Manor in 2010, winning just one point from four matches and losing his singles to Miguel Angel Jimenez, who was fourth behind him at Augusta National.

 

So it was no wonder that the flamboyant left-hander was quick to target a first US victory since 2008 after five-time Open champion Watson wrote on Twitter: "Way to go Bubba! Enjoy your victory. See you on the plane to Gleneagles."

After moving top of the Ryder Cup standings, Watson said: "I love it, going over there (to Scotland) and playing golf, so I can't wait. I know a win here is double points, so I figure I made the team. It's a great feeling.

"I haven't won a Ryder Cup yet, so that's the next big tournament I'd like to win."

Watson's second win at Augusta came in a different fashion from his first, when four birdies in succession from the 13th in the final round helped him secure a play-off with Louis Oosthuizen.

This time the 13th provided his final birdie of the day - albeit after a 366-yard drive and sand wedge-approach to the par-five - and five subsequent pars were enough to seal a three-shot victory over Jordan Spieth and Jonas Blixt.

"The shot out of the woods made me famous, but this one was a lot better for me and my nerves, my family, probably on my caddie Teddy," said Watson, who won on the second play-off hole in 2012 thanks to a brilliant recovery shot from the trees on the 10th hole.

"When Jordan missed his birdie putt on the last and he was tapping in, I went over to Teddy and I said, 'I'm not very good at math, but we've got four putts, right?'.

"He goes, 'Yes, just lag it down'. I said, 'All right'. It's a lot better for my nerves this way."

PA

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