• Augusta Masters Matsuyama wins the Augusta Masters

  • Augusta National The five curiosities that make Augusta a different tournament

In the early morning of March 11, 2011 the earth rumbled in eastern Japan like never before.

On the coast of Honsu, about 130 kilometers from Sendai, for almost six minutes the sea turned as if a huge imaginary plug had been removed from the bottom.

It was a tsunami of more than nine degrees that produced a series of devastating tsunamis.

Japan's greatest natural catastrophe

ended with nearly

20,000 dead

and millions of people losing everything.

When this disaster occurred

Hideki Matsuyama,

current champion of the Augusta Masters


was in Australia competing with his university.

Golf probably saved the life of the promising 19-year-old.

When he returned to his country, there was nothing left of the

Thoku Fukushi University facilities


A few months earlier Matsuyama had won the Asian Amateur Championship and the privilege of participating in the

Augusta Masters

as an amateur.

She was living the best time of her life, yet the sea had swallowed a part of her.

The decision to go to the Augusta Masters, just a month after the catastrophe and in full reconstruction work, was not easy.

His parents and friends had to encourage him to have the experience.

For a few months golf for Hideki stopped making sense.

Without the enthusiasm required by the experience, he entered

Magnolia Lane

and ended up visiting the

Butler Cabin


the first time on Sunday

to receive the recognition of the best amateur of the tournament, the only one capable of making the cut.

He finished in 27th place dazzling the world with laps of 72, 73, 68 and 74 strokes.

"These are very hard times for Japan now, there are still people missing, I hope I can convey a little hope," said the saddened amateur champion.

The Masters convinced the Asian player that golf was his life and months later, even as an amateur, he achieved his first victory on the Japanese professional circuit.

In August 2012

he became

the best fan in the world


The leap to professionalism was imminent and arrived in April 2013. The player's progression followed a meteoric pace.

The great leap was made in June, placing himself among the

top 10 of the Us Open

, achieving for the first time to be among the top 50 players in the world.

At home, he became the first player in history to win the order of merit on the Japanese circuit in his first year.

Months later came the first long-awaited triumph on the PGA Tour, in one of its most important tournaments, the Jack Nicklaus Memorial Tournament.

It would be the first of his six victories, which include

two World Championships

and the prized

green jacket that Dustin Johnson put on him on Sunday


Little or nothing is known of his personal life.

So reserved in his privacy is the Japanese that in 2017, when he announced his imminent paternity, not even Japanese journalists knew that he was married.

"No one has ever asked me," he answered then wryly.

He has never been known to be a girlfriend, a wife, or a companion on the circuit, just his closest usual team: coach, manager, caddy and translator.

Bob Turner

was a theology student who went to Japan as a volunteer to one of the missions of his Mormon religious congregation, right after he would meet a beautiful Japanese woman who would turn her vocation upside down.

Turner ended up translating Seve Balleteros on his many forays into Japan and is now Matsuyama's shadow.

In fact, on Sunday he seemed to enjoy the victory more than his own boss.

It was also a special moment for his

caddy Shota Hayafuji


He was in his first Masters in 2011, then their paths separated and fate united them so that together they lived this special Sunday.

The image of Hayafuji minutes after the tournament ended, with the 18th hole empty, returning the flagpole without a flag in the hole and saying goodbye to Augusta National without a cap and with a bow was instantly vitalized.

It says a lot about Japanese culture and education.

Now the

Olympic Games

in his own country is the great goal for Matsuyama and his name already sounds to light the cauldron with the

Olympic flame

or to be the

standard bearer

of his country.

According to the criteria of The Trust Project

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