2005: Newsmakers - Masters without Monty?

JAKARTA, Indonesia

Colin Montgomerie insists his game is worthy of a Masters invitation, but even after a furious finish at the Indonesia Open, it appeared the seven-time PGA European Tour Order of Merit champion is on the outside looking in.

Montgomerie shot 60 March 27 at Cengkareng Golf Club, but it wasn’t enough to come close to Thaworn Wiratchant, who won by five strokes in the event co-sanctioned by the European Tour and Asian Tour (see page 24).

Montgomerie was ranked 54th in the Official World Ranking heading into the Indonesia Open, and was hoping a victory or perhaps a runner-up finish would get him into the top 50. He tied for fourth in Jakarta, and almost certainly fell short of procuring a Masters spot – pending updating of the rankings following the weather-delayed Players Championship.

Montgomerie, 41, has played in 13 consecutive Masters, and his best finish was a tie for eighth in 1998. It was his only top 10 at Augusta, where he has missed four cuts overall and three in his past four Masters starts.

In Indonesia, Montgomerie hurt his chances with a second-round 69, after which he fell into a tie for 41st. The 69 was more harmful to Montgomerie’s chances than the number might at first indicate. Cengkareng is a par-70 course and Wiratchant won the tournament at 25 under.

Montgomerie faltered in Round 2, and his scorching finish couldn’t rescue him.

“If it’s good enough to get into the top 50 for the Masters, then it’s good enough,” Montgomerie said Sunday. “If it’s 51st or 52nd, then we’ll keep going.”

The Indonesia Open was the second consecutive tournament in which Montgomerie fell short of his goal to set up a trip to Augusta.

The previous week at the TCL Classic in China, Montgomerie figured he needed a top-3 finish to earn a spot in The Players Championship – a sequence of events that would have heightened his chances for an appearance in the Masters. He finished sixth in China.

– Staff and wire reports

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