April 1, 2018 / 10:46 PM / in 8 months

Golf-Poulter beats Hossler in Houston playoff to earn final Masters spot

April 1 (Reuters) - Veteran Ian Poulter beat PGA Tour rookie Beau Hossler in a playoff at the Houston Open on Sunday, earning the final invitation to next week’s U.S. Masters.

Englishman Poulter parred the first extra hole to beat American Hossler after the pair had shot matching 67s to finish regulation at 19-under-par 269 at Golf Club of Houston.

Poulter sank a 20-foot birdie putt at the last hole to force the playoff.

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.

Hossler then handed win to Poulter in the playoff when he thinned his third shot from a greenside bunker into a water hazard.

Poulter arrived in Houston needing a win to qualify for the Masters, after missing out by a whisker when he found himself 51st in the world rankings last week.

The top 50 at the cutoff last Monday earned exemption to Augusta. (Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina, editing by Gene Cherry)

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