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Posted April 3, 2012, 3:01 pm
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No monkey business on Charl Schwartzel's menu

Before he played host to the Champions Dinner on Tuesday night, Charl Schwartzel explained one of the exotic sauces on the menu wasn’t as bad as it sounds.

For the South African BBQ, Masters Tournament champions could dine on filet mignon, lamb chops and chicken for dinner. And if they wanted, they could add monkey gland sauce.

“It’s got nothing related to the name. There’s no monkey and there’s no gland,” Schwartzel said to laughter. “It’s a sauce that’s pretty familiar in South Africa in all the restaurants. You put it over your meat. It’s a bit of chutney Worcester sauce and some onion.

“I had the chef yesterday bring me a sample, and even he said he was a bit surprised. He was a bit suspicious about it and he tasted it, and he said, ‘Yeah, it’s good sauce that you just put over your meat.’ ”

Schwartzel is back in Augusta looking to post another surprise, like he did in 2011 when he closed with four consecutive birdies to win his first green jacket. When Schwartzel rolled in an 18-foot birdie putt in the final round for a two-shot win, he didn’t think about his birdie binge.

“When that putt disappeared on 18, honestly the last thing that went through my mind is that I made my fourth straight birdie,” he said. “I just won the green jacket.”

The 27-year-old Schwartzel is looking to become just the fourth player in Masters history to defend his title. Yet, all eyes are on players like Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson and Luke Donald to win the green jacket.

“To be honest, I don’t look into those things,” Schwartzel said. “There’s a lot of talk now. Tiger has obviously won again and he’s really playing very good. Rory is playing well. Phil is playing well; Luke; all of the guys.

“But to me, I go about my business as I normally do, and I feel and I know, if I play my best, I can compete with anyone. So, you know, that’s the way I look at it.”

Schwartzel missed the cut in his past two events – the Transitions Championship and Houston Open. Still, he feels his game is in good shape.

“I know if I can get my putting in place,” he said, “I’m pretty much on track like I was last year.”