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Utah’s Tony Finau fades to 9th place at Masters, is 8 shots behind leader Hideki Matsuyama

Finau shot a 1-over-par 73 on Saturday in weather-interrupted third round and will need a miracle Sunday to win his first green jacket at Augusta National Golf Club.

Tony Finau tees off on the ninth hole during the third round of the Masters golf tournament on Saturday, April 10, 2021, in Augusta, Ga.
Matt Slocum, AP

Tony Finau could never quite get it going during the weather-interrupted third round of the Masters on Saturday afternoon.

As a result, the Salt Lake City native is eight shots behind the leader, Hideki Matsuyama of Japan, and will need nothing short of a miracle to win the green jacket in his fourth appearance in the major golf tournament.

Finau made two birdies and three bogeys for the 1-over-par 73 and is in ninth place at 3-under for the tournament. Matuysama is at 11-under, while first- and second-round leader Justin Rose of England slipped to a tie for second-place with Xander Shauffele, Marc Leishman and Will Zalatoris.

Matsuyama recorded the first bogey-free round this week for any golfer in shooting a 65.

For Finau, it was another disappointing finish to a round that was far less adventurous than his previous two at Augusta National Golf Club. There are seven golfers between Finau and Matsuyama.

Finua was even-par for the day heading into the par-4 17, but pushed his tee shot way right, then had to chip back into the fairway. His third shot was 25 feet wide of the hole, and he two-putted from there for the bogey.

On the par-4 18th, his approach was right on the flagstick, but spun back some 12 feet. He just missed the birdie putt and had to settle for the par and the round of 73.

Finau opened Saturday’s round with a bogey, but made a birdie on hole No. 3. However, he made a bogey on the fifth hole, and followed that with nine straight pars before making a birdie on the par-5 15th hole.

Finau was looking at a 25-foot putt from the fringe of the No. 9 green when the horn blew and the tournament was delayed by weather, and was sitting in a tie for 11th place.

He birdied just one of the four par-5s on Saturday, while Matsuyama didn’t make any birdies on the par-5s. Instead, the leader made par on the first three and an eagle on No. 15, sinking a 10-footer to begin a stretch where he was 4-under in three holes.

Through an interpreter Bob Turner, Matsuyama said he spent the weather delay in his car, looking at his cell phone. An announcer on the CBS telecast said Jones is from Utah.

The other Utahn in the 88-person Masters field, Sandy’s Mike Weir, missed the 36-hole cut after Friday’s second round.