Ian Poulter wins Houston Open play-off to secure Masters place

Justin Rose

Ian Poulter pulled off a dramatic playoff win over Beau Hossler at the Houston Open on Sunday to secure a place at this weeks Masters.

Such as, hopefully, the Ryder Cup in France this autumn.

The Englishman's Houston campaign had got off to a rocky start, having carded 75 on Thursday, however he more than found his form again after the fright.

"I said yesterday I wanted to beat these guys at their best and I think I saw Ian's best today".

"It is awesome, to get this done today to get me to Augusta is unbelievable", he told Sky Sports.

He punched his chest in excitement after his putt dropped in, a minute after Hossler's ball had grazed the hole with the American's own birdie attempt that would have clinched victory at the par-four 18th.

One week after Poulter was mistakenly told he had locked up a spot at Augusta National through the world rankings, he left no doubt by winning with a clutch moment reminiscent of his Ryder Cup heroics from Medinah in 2012. "I thought he holed it", said Poulter, whose 20-foot birdie putt was on a similar line.

"I hit a great putt, good read and it obviously was very helpful seeing his putt", Poulter added.

Three-time major champion Jordan Spieth finished tied for third after posting a 6-under-par score of 66 on Sunday - going 16-under-par for the tournament.

On the first playoff hole, Hossler blew his tee shot into the fairway bunker for the second straight time and then proceeded to fan his approach into the greenside bunker.

Poulter followed an opening-round 73 that had him packing his bags in anticipation of a missed cut with rounds of 64 and 65 to reach 14-under 202 at the Golf Club of Houston.

Poulter then lost his last eight match to Kevin Kisner 8&6.

Just last week, towards the end of the WGC Match Play, Poulter was told he had earned himself a spot in the Masters when in fact he had not. Last week [at the Match Play] was painful and to come here this week, I was exhausted and frustrated. "Unfortunately, he came out on top this time, but I feel good about my chances moving forward and I feel good that I can contend when it's important".

"I guess I should never listen to other people", Poulter said.

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