Jordan Spieth admitted after his final round on Sunday that he was 'stung' by his failure to convert a Masters lead into his first win at Augusta, after Bubba Watson cruised to his second Green Jacket.
The 20-year-old Texan birdied four of his first seven holes to open up a three-shot lead over fellow countryman Watson, but costly bogeys on eight and nine that coincided with two birdies for the 2012 champion saw a four-shot swing just before the turn.
Spieth's challenge failed to reignite on the back nine as Watson eventually strolled to another major title - but the 2013 Rookie of the Year insisted he is now as hungry as ever for success at Augusta.
He said post-round: "It stings right now. The only thing I'm thinking about is, 'When am I getting back next year?' I'm hungry.
"That's what is on my mind, because it's tough. It's tough being in this position."
The youngster, though, will have ample opportunities to make amends for this week as he displayed a maturity way beyond his years throughout, as well as a calm and composed demeanour whenever he faced the media.
He will, however, have to improve his driving when under pressure as several of his opening tee shots were pulled left. Having just emerged from his teenage years, nerves were always going to play their part but a round of even par at a Sunday set-up Augusta National is an achievement not to be sniffed at.
He added: "I wasn't quite as patient today as I was the first three rounds and holding emotions [together].
"It was still the best I've ever done a Sunday though. I was very close, and I know that it can only improve from there."
His holed bunker shot on the par-three fourth that gave him the outright lead will live long in the memory of those who witnessed it, as will his tee shot on the sixth two holes later as him and Watson refused to give an inch early on. They traded birdie two's on both occasions as the watching patrons began to dream of yet another exhilarating climax.
But it wasn't to be, unfortunately, and that is more down to Watson's astuteness on the back nine rather than Spieth's - or Jonas Blixt's - failure to pose a threat to the eccentric American's lead.
There are enough positives to take from this week for Spieth for it be heralded as a great week for him. He experienced the pressure-cooker environment of the back nine of a major, for one.
He will know now when to be conservative, and when to be aggressive. He has tasted the fine delights of being in Augusta's final pairing, and that's an experience that cannot be bought or tailored.
At just 20 years of age, there is no question that in the very near future Spieth will land one of the big four.
For now, though, Watson showed that in an era where young golfers are clambering their way to the top at the expense of seasoned professionals, experience is everything. Oh, and a long, long drive.
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