Sunday, April 14, 2019
AUGUSTA, GA (WRDW/WAGT) -- Flashes of lightning. The crack of thunder. The bursts of wind blasting through the fairways and greenways of Augusta National Golf Club.
It's an image the officials at the National are trying to beat to the punch this year as weather threatens to derail an already dramatic tournament with Tiger Woods making his fifth attempt at a green jacket on Sunday.
Tournament leaders agreed Saturday to move up tee times for golf's most prestigious tournament on Sunday morning. Instead of a much later morning tee, the best golfers in the world will have to get up a little earlier to meet that 7:30 a.m. tee time. The tournament's leaders, meanwhile, will tee off at 9:20 a.m.
So, who's got the inside track for that jacket? Let's start with the top three.
Francesco Molinari has a history with the Masters -- and Tiger, too
Golf.com -- and the CBS broadcast of the event -- brought up an interesting fact about Tournament leader Francesco Molinari of Italy: he once was caddie for his older brother, Edoardo Molinari, in 2006. Who was Edoardo paired up with back then? Tiger Woods.
Funny how things work out.
Now, at thirteen under, Molinari has the chance to be the first Italian golfer to win a green jacket at the National.
Tony Finau thinks playing with Tiger is what dreams are made of
Tony Finau was asked what it would be like to play against Tiger Woods in the Masters. Simply put, he called it a dream.
"As a kid, I always wanted to compete against him and have the opportunity to ‑‑ you know, I've dreamed of playing in the final group with him in a major championship, and it would be quite a cool thing for me if I were to play with him tomorrow in the final group of a Masters," Finau said. "It would be a dream come true for me."
Also a dream come true is tying the golf great heading into the final round.
And yes, Tiger Woods is fighting, scratching, and clawing to get that fifth jacket
He's been here before, obviously, but that doesn't mean Tiger Woods doesn't feel the pressure.
"The day I don’t feel pressure is the day I quit," Woods said. "I always thought that if you care about something, obviously you're going to feel pressure. And I've always felt it, from the first time I remember ever playing a golf tournament to now. That hasn't changed."
But what has changed for Woods is time. It's been 14 years since he's had the pleasure of putting on that jacket. But it was momentum from last year that Woods said put him in the position he's in after playing 11 under.
"Last year was a step in the right direction and built a season around that and then here we are," Woods said.
And here we are. It's going to be an early start on Sunday. Let's just hope the weather holds.