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Competitors warm up on the ‘pretty difficult’ course in Masters practice rounds

Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 9:05 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - The Masters has shown us plenty of epic performances, incredible storylines and breakthrough performances over the years.

But one thing that’s not done often is becoming a champion in back-to-back years.

After setting the tournament record for lowest score, 2020 champion Dustin Johnson feels confident that he should still be among the favorites.

Johnson has finished in the top 10 in the past five Masters tournaments. In context, that means he’s been in the running to claim the green jacket in the past four April Masters and came away with it in the November tournament five months ago.

A lot has been made of the scoring record as many players feel that the soft conditions allowed for higher scores than we’d typically see.

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Johnson didn’t have a response on anyone making light of his record, and conditions or not, this is still Augusta National and is among the hardest courses in the world.

“As of right now, the course is going to play pretty difficult. You know, but it’s still the same,” Johnson said. “I mean, you’ve got to hit numbers, and no matter if the ball is spinning back or staying in place or bouncing forward, you’ve still got to hit quality golf shots and land them in the spots that you want to.”

Bryson Dechambeau was a perfect example of this.

The long hitter felt that his distance alone would be enough to conquer Augusta. And a two-under, tied for 34th finish was not what he was expecting.

Dechambeau conceded that his long game was what he wanted, but it was indeed his short game that caught up with him.

“Length is only as good as you can hit your next shot, is what I always say. And that’s the most important thing about Augusta National, is it doesn’t test just the driving,” he explained. “It tests your second shots, it tests the third shot, it tests -- you’re making for par, your 4-footer you’re trying to make for par.”

“I think that’s what’s so special about here is that you have to have every facet of your game working really, really well,” Dechambeau said.

It appears the mad scientist has done a lot of thinking since his November performance, but I’d expect nothing less from Bryson.

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