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Cabrera's dilemma

Masters chairman: Here is Angel Cabrera's path to play this year at Augusta National

January 18, 2024
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Rey Del Rio

Angel Cabrera’s name is not on the Masters list of invitees for this year’s tournament, but he is listed under a heading that reads “past champions not playing.” According to Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley, however, that doesn’t mean that Cabrera isn’t able to compete in April.

The 2009 Masters champion, who lost in a playoff to Adam Scott in 2013, last competed in 2019, when he missed the cut for the third straight year. He was released from prison last year (Aug. 4) after serving 30 months in Brazil and Argentina for domestic violence charges and other charges involving two ex-girlfriends. The 54-year-old was granted an early release and must ask for permission to leave Argentina, his home country.

There’s the catch.

“Angel certainly is one of our great champions,” Ridley said at Santa Maria Golf Club in Panama ahead of the Latin America Amateur Championship. “As we all know, he has been unable to participate in the Masters the last couple of years due to legal issues.

“Presently we have been in constant contact with Angel's representatives. He presently is not able to enter the United States. He doesn't have a visa, and I know that that process is being worked through. We certainly wish him the best of luck with that, and we'll definitely welcome him back if he's able to straighten out those legal issues.”

Cabrera’s manager, Manuel Tagle, in an email to Golfweek, wrote, “While competing in the Masters again is a dream, securing a visa is Angel’s priority at the moment so he can resume his professional career.”

Cabrera played in the Abierto del Litoral event in December in Argentina, his first event since being released from jail. He tied for 10th place. Up next, he plans to play in a February PGA Tour Championship event in Morocco, where he is not required to hold a visa to travel.