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Casey crashes out of Masters hunt

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Casey hopes to learn from collapse

England's Paul Casey endured a torrid day at Augusta as he carded a closing 79 to plummet out of Masters contention after starting in fourth place.

The 30-year-old was Britain's best hope for a Masters winner since Nick Faldo in 1996 but dropped six shots in five holes from the 4th to collapse.

He ended up on level par for the week, eight shots off winner Trevor Immelman. Lee Westwood battled hard to tie for 11th after a 73, while Ian Poulter was four over after an eventful 78.

Casey was four shots off overnight leader Immelman going into the final round and things seemed to be going his way when he birdied the par-four 3rd.

But he double bogeyed the 4th and dropped a shot at the 5th before calling a penalty on himself at the next when the ball moved as he addressed a putt.

"That took the wind out of my sails because it was so difficult out there," he said. "Everybody's made mistakes and bogeys you can handle.

I was as good from tee to green as anyone

Lee Westwood
"But to have a golf ball move on you just when I thought 'make a par, right the ship and end the bogey streak', that's out of your control."

The penalty led to another bogey and after bogeys at seven and eight, three more dropped shots coming home made it a day to forget.

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger," he added. "I still had a great week. It's very disappointing and I'll go away and think about this, but I'll take the positives out of it as I always try to."

Westwood, who was sitting on one under at the start of the day, birdied the 2nd but his challenge came unstuck with three bogeys on the outward nine.

He birdied the last for a third straight 73 and will receive a guaranteed invite for next year's tournament.

"I was as good from tee to green as anyone," he said. "It's just on the greens I haven't maximised my chances, I've putted very averagely.

"It was nice to make that one on the last, I've just got to go away and work on that.

"It's nice to get the invite back. It's a tournament you don't want to miss and it's nice to secure an invite at the earliest possible opportunity."

Poulter had a glimmer of hope with birdies at the first two holes but then had four double bogeys, three bogeys and three further birdies to finish tied for 25th.

And after his hole-in-one at the 16th on the opening day, the 32-year-old ended up with scores of one, two, three and four at that hole during the week.

"I've not done an awful lot wrong, and there's no way I'm going to walk off today thinking that I've just had a mare," he said.

England's Nick Dougherty ended what he described as a "memorable" week with two bogeys for a final-round 76 to finish his first Masters five over.

The 25-year-old Liverpudlian, who qualified through last year's seventh at the US Open, even led for a brief spell on day one.

"It's been a superb week. I've thoroughly enjoyed myself," he said. "I'd have liked to have done a bit better but I'm delighted to have been here for the four days. It's been memorable. I've taken a lot out of it."

England's Justin Rose, the joint first-round leader with Immelman, carded a final-round 76 for seven over.

see also
Final round as it happened
13 Apr 08 |  Golf
Quotes of the day
14 Apr 08 |  Golf
Masters day four photos
13 Apr 08 |  Golf
Masters leaderboard
10 Apr 08 |  Golf
Tom and Ben explore Augusta
06 Apr 08 |  Golf

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