Spanish eyes were indeed smiling on Sunday afternoon at Augusta as Jon Rahm produced a near flawless final round of golf to win his first green jacket as The Masters Champion.

The Spaniard also returned to number 1 in the world after picking up the four-shot win as he held off challenges from LIV Golf duo Brooks Koepka and Phil Mickelson, with the latter shooting a fantastic 65 on the final day to improve to 8-under par for the tournament.

However, it was a day for Spanish golf fans to enjoy as six years after Sergio Garcia landed his Masters win on the legendary Seve Ballesteros’ birthday, Jon Rahm did exactly the same yesterday.

Rahm’s win also came on the 40th anniversary of Ballesteros’ second Masters victory, which he achieved in 1983, just three years after his first in 1980.

Wth his win, Rahm becomes the fourth Spanish player to land The Masters after Ballesteros, Jose Maria Olazabal (who both won the tournament twice) and Sergio Garcia, who won in 2017, which was the first Masters event that Rahm competed in.

Emotional Rahm Dedicates Win To Ballesteros

After carding a superb 69 to leapfrog overnight leader Brooks Koepka, who struggled to a 75 on the final day, Rahm explained that after he had hit his third shot close at the 18th hole on Sunday, the enormity of what he was about to achieve sunk in.

“We all dream of things like this as players,” explained Rahm in his obligatory post round interview in the cabin.

“You try to visualise what it’s going to be like and what it’s going to feel like.

“And when I hit that third shot on the green, and I could tell it was close by the crowd’s reaction, just the wave of emotion of so many things just overtook me.

“Never thought I was going to cry by winning a golf tournament, but I got very close on that 18th hole.”

Rahm, who is known to be a student of the history of the game, also commented on how important it is to see Spanish golf represented at the highest level.

“A lot of it [is] because of what it means to me, and to Spanish golf. It’s Spain’s 10th major, fourth player to win the Masters, and my second major win. It’s pretty incredible.

“This one was for Seve. He was up there helping and help he did.”

Early Start For Completion Of Third Round

The final round came hot on the heels of the completion of the third round of action, after a large proportion of Saturday’s play was washed out due to very rainy conditions at Augusta which made the course extremely tough to play.

So many players were back early on Sunday to finish their third round, meaning a slightly delayed start to the final round of the tournament.

By the end of play in the third round, Brooks Koepka had established a two-shot lead over the field at 11-under-par, with Rahm lying in second place on 9-under. Behind the top two, there were a huge cluster of players around the 6 and 5-under-par mark.

Koepka Complains About ‘Brutally’ Slow Play

For a moment, it appeared as though LIV Golf would have their first Major champion, but over the course of the final 18 holes, Koepka suffered and by his own standards, played pretty poorly.

The American complained after the final round of what he called “brutally slow play’ of the group in front, with pointed remarks being made about the pace of Patrick Cantlay’s play in particular.

Indeed, Cantlay’s playing partner, Viktor Hovland, was another annoyed by the American’s slow pace and on one hole, the par 5 13th, Hovland played his third shot as Cantlay was still walking towards the green, seemingly angry at having to wait once again for his playing partner.

The final two took almost five hours to complete their round and Koepka was certainly unhappy at having to wait to play on almost every hole.

“Jon went to the bathroom like seven times during the round,” complained Koepka “and we were still waiting.”

After several years where Koepka has suffered with numerous injuries, the American did however take solace in the fact that he now looks well set to add to his four Major titles.

“I’ve known this for a while,” he answered when asked if he felt he could add to his Major trophy haul.

“But I guess it was just a matter of going out and doing it. I led for three rounds and just didn’t do it on the last day. That’s it. Plain and simple.”

“Eventually this will be a positive,” Koepka continued “I’d say probably give it a week and I’ll start to see some positives out of it and carry this over to the PGA, the US Open and The Open.

“But right now, it’s kind of tough to see, if I’m honest, probably for the next few hours and the next few days.”

Majestic Mickelson Rolls Back The Years For Final Round 65

While Jon Rahm was never really under pressure during the final round once the Spaniard hit the front in the middle of the round, Phil Mickelson put on a show to shoot 65 and move from one-under to 8-under, tying for second place with Koepka.

Justin Spieth was another to shine on the final day shooting 66, another fine low score at Augusta to finish joint fourth in the tournament a shot behind Koepka and Mickelson alongside Patrick Reed and Russell Henley.

Viktor Hovland and Cam Young finished tied for seventh on six under par while the top placed British player was current US Open Champion Matt Fitzpatrick who was one of four players to finish on four under par (Collin Morikawa, Xander Schauffele and Scottie Scheffler being the others).

Sam Bennett was the top ranking amateur in the field finishing tied 16th on 2-under-par.

28 of the players finished the final round either level par or better.

Tiger Woods was forced to pull out of the third round restart due to an injury and doubt remains about whether Woods will play in the tournament again given his ongoing health battles and struggles to remain fully fit.