The Pairing Effect

By: Laurie Ott Email
By: Laurie Ott Email

April 3, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga.---They're some of the most popular papers on the course: the pairing sheets. That's where fans find out who's playing in pairs for Thursday's first round. In a Masters tradition, the US amateur champ tees it up on Thursday with the defending Masters champion.

That honor falls to Richie Ramsay, who will play with 2006 winner Phil Mickelson.

"He's a very enjoyable guy to be around," Mickelson said of Ramsay. "He's got a great personality and he's fun to be around. I think we're going to have a fun couple days being paired together, as is tradition."

One of the best ways for amateurs to prepare themselves for round one is to play the course with past champions. Today Ramsay played with Jose Maria Olazabal, who has two Green Jackets himself.

"It's great to play with him," Ramsay said. "He's a proven winner at this golf course and he's won numerous titles around the world, so he was really good. I enjoyed my time out there."

We asked Olazabal if he'd given Ramsay any advice.

"Well, I just tried to find the right places around the greens and, you know, don't be too aggressive, and attack every flag. That's pretty much it."

Would he have the same advice for his partner on Thursday?

"There won't be advice on Thursday," he laughed.

To see the full list of pairings and tee times, click here. is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

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