Masters playoff format: What is the tiebreaker at Augusta? [Updated 2024]

The Masters playoff format differs from every other major championship, so how is the champion at Augusta decided if it’s tied after 18 holes?
The Masters, Scottie Scheffler
The Masters, Scottie Scheffler / Warren Little/GettyImages

Players who tee it up at Augusta National Golf Club have 72 holes to prove that they deserve to be The Masters champion. But sometimes it takes more than that. And with what we've seen through the first 54 holes at The Masters in 2024, it seems like we could be heading for a playoff at Augusta National with a crowded top of the leaderboard full of many of the world's best.

World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler (-7) entered the final round with a one-stroke lead. But right on his heels were Collin Morikawa (-6), Max Homa (-5), Ludvig Åberg (-4) and Bryson DeChambeau (-3). And let's not forget about the likes of Xander Schauffele lurking at -2 either.

Obviously, there are no co-champions when it comes to major championship golf. However, there are a variety of different playoff formats in the game of golf. So with things tight down the stretch at Augusta, there was a simple question that golf fans watching in anticipation were asking.

What is The Masters playoff format if there is a need for a tiebreaker at the end of Sunday?

Masters playoff format: What is The Masters tiebreaker after 72 holes?

The Masters playoff format is a sudden-death playoff where the first player to win a hole in what amounts to match play will be named the champion at Augusta and get the Green Jacket. This format is different from the other four major championships, which all have aggregate playoff formats in which a number of holes are played to determine a winner with the lowest score over that span winning.

As for the particulars, the first playoff hole at Augusta in the sudden-death showdown would be the 18th hole and then they would play the 10th hole if no one has won. Those are the only two holes that would be played in the playoff as they run parallel to one another, forming a pseudo-circle.

When was the last playoff at The Masters?

We haven’t seen a playoff at The Masters in six years. The last playoff at Augusta was in 2017 when Sergio Garcia was finally able to capture the Green Jacket after a litany of close calls by topping Justin Rose in a playoff. Garcia birdied the first playoff hole after an errant drive from Rose to win the tournament.