Scottie Scheffler v Ludvig Aberg: wins, strengths and weaknesses in golf’s rivalry of the future

Scottie Scheffler and Ludvig Aberg eye up their putts on the 6th green at Pebble Beach
Scottie Scheffler's main challenge over the next few years may well come from Ludvig Aberg, left - Charles Knight/Shutterstock

Scottie Scheffler’s second Masters win in three years was comprehensive in the end.

Although the American’s challengers pushed him close on the front nine at Augusta, a hat-trick of birdies around the turn took Scheffler two clear and three more in four holes exiting Amen Corner floored the field. His four-shot victory was entirely merited.

Who or what can stop the world No 1 from dominating the next few years?

It is a valid question. Scheffler arrived at Augusta as the clear favourite – on the back of successive wins at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Players, plus a second at the Houston Open – and delivered a crushing victory.

If there was a ray of light, though, it came in the challenge laid down by rookie Ludvig Aberg.

The young Swede produced an exceptionally mature performance on his debut at Augusta, a course where players historically do not tend to peak until their seventh or eighth visit.

Aberg, who was still at college this time last year, rose to seventh in the new world rankings published on Monday and is only going to get better.

Scottie Scheffler
Scheffler wins his second Masters in three years - JOHN G MABANGLO/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

The prospect of America’s top player and Europe’s rising wünderkind, only three years apart age-wise, locking horns for the next few years, is a mouthwatering one for golf fans...

Here Telegraph Sport runs the rule over their respective strengths and weaknesses.

Scottie Scheffler

Age: 27

World ranking: 1

Major wins

Two Green Jackets in five Masters and surely only a matter of time until he adds to that collection. Has finished T2 in both the US PGA and the US Open in last two years.


Born in Ridgewood, New Jersey. Only boy among four siblings. Moved to Dallas, Texas, aged six, where he played at Royal Oaks. Prolific winner at youth level, winning 75 times on the PGA junior circuit. Deeply religious.


Too many to mention. Scheffler credited his “short game and driving” as being the biggest factors in his latest Masters success, with his short game probably more decisive given the winds on days one and two, when he was able to recover from being out of position around the greens. He also noted his ability to stay calm under pressure at the end. “I didn’t let my emotions get the best of me this time,” he said of his one-putt on 18, as opposed to his four-putt at the last two years ago. “I kept my head down. I don’t think I even took my hat off and waved to the crowd walking up 18. I stayed in the moment.” Credits his faith – he and wife, Meredith, are both deeply religious – as being hugely important in terms of allowing him to clear his mind and trust in God’s plan for him.

Scottie Scheffler of the U.S. and his wife, Meredith Scudder react on the 6th green during the par 3 contest
Scheffler and his wife, Meredith, left caddying for him at the par three tournament last year, are devout Christians - REUTERS/Mike Blake


People used to say his putting, but Scheffler has kept it very tidy this year. Only three-putted twice in 72 holes last week. “What is he not good at?” mused his caddie Ted Scott on Sunday evening. “I don’t know. I think his super power is people that are super powerful are good at everything, and he seems to be good at everything. He doesn’t really have a weakness. I think people created a weakness in his putting. He’s not a weak putter. He’s a good putter. He’s a very good putter.”

Personal life

Settled. Married to high school sweetheart Meredith. Their first baby is due later this month, at which point Scheffler says golf will be only his “fourth priority” (after God, his wife and his child, presumably). But he warned anyone thinking he is suddenly going to stop winning: “I still love competing. I don’t plan on taking my eye off the ball anytime soon, that’s for sure.”

Ludvig Aberg

Age: 24

World ranking: 7

Major wins

This was Aberg’s first major, let alone his first Masters. Second place was none too shabby given where the game’s greats have finished in their first majors (Tiger Woods T41, Jack Nicklaus CUT, Arnold Palmer CUT, Gary Player fourth, Phil Mickelson T29, Rory McIlroy T42 and Ben Hogan CUT).


Born in Eslov, Sweden. Preferred football as a boy but his dad used to bribe him to play golf, which was only possible for around four months of the year due to snow. Went to Texas Tech where he was the star player on the Red Raiders team, picking up a slew of records and becoming the first student to earn his full PGA Tour card via collegiate merit as part of the new PGA Tour University programme.

Europe's Viktor Hovland, left and Europe's Ludvig Aberg hug on the 11th green after defeating the United States pair of Scottie Scheffler and Brooks Koepka
Aberg and Viktor Hovland trounce Scheffler and Brooks Koepka 9&7 in the Saturday foursomes at last September's Ryder Cup - AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia


Strikes the ball so cleanly. Uses his 6ft 3in frame well. Big hitter. Ranked ninth in driving this week at 308.5 yards average, above Scheffler (13th at 305.7 yards). But his biggest strength has to be his temperament. Seems unfazed by anything, winning on the European and PGA Tours within six months of turning pro, winning two points at the Ryder Cup before he had even played a major. The way Aberg played the final round on Sunday, shrugging off the water ball on 11 with a little smile as he walked to the 12th tee was hugely impressive. Many would have collapsed emotionally after that. He stayed positive. “Yeah, obviously it wasn’t ideal to hit it in the water on 11,” he said afterwards. “I think we all know that. I mean, I felt like me – me and my team – we’ve focused a lot on just keep playing no matter what happens. I think me finishing well after those couple of holes was pretty encouraging to see.” That is an understatement.


Some have cited his putting but Aberg did not three-putt once all week, averaging 1.53 putts per hole (fourth best in the field). Perhaps his lack of experience is a weakness, although it didn’t seem to affect him much at Augusta. That, and holding on to snack bars while high-fiving patrons.

Personal life

Going out with British tennis player Olivia Peet after meeting at Texas Tech (first spotted together at the 2023 Ryder Cup gala dinner on the Spanish Steps in Rome). Seems remarkably well-adjusted. Dad played golf, has an older sister named Linnea.