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Golf: Norman says more major wins coming Scott's way

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Greg Norman, who inspired Adam Scott to become the first Australian to win the Masters, said Monday his protege will go on to claim more major golf championships.

Norman endured Masters heartbreak with three runner-up finishes at Augusta and said Scott making the breakthrough should help push him to more big wins.

"Congratulations to Adam Scott on becoming the first Australian to win the Masters," Norman said on Facebook after Scott beat Argentina's Angel Cabrera at the second playoff hole to win the coveted green jacket.

"I have been a huge believer in Adam and I am so proud of him, as is the rest of Australia.

"Adam is a great player and I'm confident this victory will catapult him to win more majors. It will not surprise me if he wins more major championships than any other Australian golfer in history."

Scott said what toughened him up for the intense Masters pressure was watching two-time British Open winner Norman suffer three famous runner-up finishes at Augusta National without ever claiming the title.

"Part of this is for him because he's given me so much time and inspiration and belief," Scott said. "I drew on that a lot today. I somehow managed to stay in each shot when I needed to.

"He has devoted so much time to myself and other young Australian players who came after him. Incredibly generous," he added of Norman.

"Hopefully at some point I'll get to sit down with Greg and have a chat and go through it all. I'm sure he's really happy."

Despite his British Open wins, Norman is better remembered for his runner-up finishes at Augusta which only intensified Australian golfers' desire to finally break through at the Masters.

Norman took a bogey at the 18th in the 1986 Masters to hand Jack Nicklaus his 18th and last major title at the age of 46. Then in 1987, Norman lost a playoff when Augusta native Larry Mize holed a miraculous chip shot.

In 1996, the Australian suffered the greatest last-round collapse in major golf history, leading by six over Nick Faldo only to lose by five to the Englishman in an epic turnaround.

"I was very proud of all of the Aussies today," said Norman.

"It gave me so much pride to look up at the leaderboard and see three Aussie flags on there, and I was on the edge of my seat all afternoon watching the Masters."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130415/golf-norman-says-more-major-wins-coming-scotts-way