Mahan, Kuchar set up first American finale in 5 years
Sunday, February 24, 2013
MARANA, Ariz. – It’s an All-American final at the WGC-Accenture Match Play, as Hunter Mahan and Matt Kuchar will face off in the final match in cold, windy conditions at Dove Mountain.
Steady play has helped both players find plenty of success at this event. Kuchar has made it to at least the quarterfinals in each of the last three years. Mahan won here last year. He’s won 11 consecutive matches, and 13 of his past 14.
Mahan beat Ryder Cup rival Ian Poulter, the 2011 Match Play champion, 4 and 3, in the semifinals. Kuchar beat Jason Day by the same margin. Mahan is seeking his sixth PGA Tour victory, and third in a World Golf Championship. Kuchar is looking for his fifth victory, and first since last year’s Players Championship.
“I picture us hopefully hitting a lot of fairways and greens and just letting the other person make mistakes and not being overly aggressive,” Mahan said. “With the wind blowing so strong, you really have to know where you want to miss it, and you have to be so committed out there.”
Kuchar and Mahan are both former USGA champions. Kuchar claimed the 1997 U.S. Amateur. Mahan won the 1999 U.S. Junior, and was runner-up three years later at the U.S. Amateur.
This is the first time two Americans have met in the final since Tiger Woods beat Stewart Cink, 8 and 7, five years ago. This is the fifth All-American final in the tournament’s 15-year history. Mahan is trying to become the first back-to-back winner of this event since Tiger Woods in 2003 and ’04.