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Masters Ratings Decline 13% as Tiger Woods’s Comeback Stalls

Golfer Tiger Woods
American Golfer Tiger Woods. Photographer: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The Masters Tournament was watched in 13 percent fewer households in the biggest U.S. markets than a year ago, according to preliminary information, as South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel captured the title and a final-round rally by Tiger Woods stalled on the final nine holes.

Yesterday’s fourth round at Augusta National Golf Club was watched on CBS in an average of 10.4 percent of households in the top 56 U.S. television markets, compared with last year’s 12.0 equivalent rating, CBS Corp. said in a news release.

This year’s ratings were the second-highest for the final round in the last decade, up 18 percent from 2009 and up 1 percent from 2005, when Woods won the last of his four green jackets as champion.

The 2010 tournament marked the return of Woods to competitive golf after taking a break from the sport following an admission of marital infidelity. He tied for fourth both this year and last. Phil Mickelson won last year.

Woods shot a 31 over the first nine holes yesterday, rallying from a seven-shot deficit to tie for the lead when third-round leader Rory McIlroy began to falter. Woods managed only an even-par 36 over the final nine holes, finishing at 10-under.

Schwartzel birdied the final four holes for a 6-under-par 66 and 14-under total, two strokes ahead of runners-up Jason Day and Adam Scott.

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