Since early November, eyes from all over the world have been fixed on Georgia as we await confirmation of a certain election result. Still, from November 12 to 15, golf fans have had something else on their minds – The Masters 2020. This year’s tournament was initially scheduled for April, but it was pushed back to November because of the continuing onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Incredible Results at the Masters
Set in the beautiful surroundings of the Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, Georgia, this year’s Masters tournament has already seen some remarkable things. The first two days have been beyond exciting, and as things currently stand at the time of writing, Jon Rahm of Spain has the top spot on the leaderboard with a total of 9 below par and the single-best day-2 score of 6 below par.
The Action So Far – Day 1
Everything kicked off on November 12, but not in the best way, thanks to a 3-hour rain delay, which interrupted play for several, including World Number 1 Dustin Johnson. As action resumed, day 1 saw all of the biggest names facing off, such as Tiger Woods, Bryson DeChambeau, Jon Rahm, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Casey, and more. We’ll cover Tiger Woods, the 2019 Master’s Winner, in more detail further below.
The DeChambeau experiment has been dealt something of a blow after a very disappointing start for the player. He seemed to be spending more time in the rough than on any fairways and had an unfortunate encounter with some azalea bushes. He suffered a double-bogey but has pulled it back as time has gone on, now breaking even on par but still far behind the leadership pack.
Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas were both caught up in the rain delay and only finished 9 and 10 holes respectively on day 1. That limited round size still put Thomas far up the board with a fantastic score of 5 under.
Day 1 finished with England’s Paul Casey on top at 7 under, but with several key players having holes in hand, nothing was certain.
The Action So Far – Day 2
The rain left the entire course pretty soft for the second day of play, which saw an absolutely astonishing 23 players finishing with under-par scores in the second round. As day 3 play began on Saturday, with all the new entrants to the under-par scores, there were a total of 49 players starting the day with scores in the red. The stakes were high. England’s Paul Casey quickly lost his lead after a disastrous 11 holes.
DeChambeau fell lower after a rough second day. He began his third-day on a very tense moment trying to gain a much-needed eagle on the 13th (par 5). Day 2 was called off early due to bad light and resumed early on Saturday before official day 3 play was started at 10:30 ET on November 14.
Tiger Woods – Masters 2020
Things are going pretty well for Tiger Woods this year. He started well on the first day shooting 4 under par with a bogey-free round of 68, but slipped to 22nd after his second round of even par. Tiger played a consistent round on day one, and it was by far his lowest opening day total in Masters history. Prior to Thursday, Woods lowest round on opening day was 70. He had some incredible birdies on the 1st and 16th holes Thursday.
ESPN golf analyst and 2-time US Open winner, Andy North remarked that Tiger on Thursday played “exactly the round he needed,” and that he was bolstered by a careful and considered approach given his detailed knowledge of the course at Augusta. It’s a shame that as play has gone on, Tiger has not been able to maintain that so far, but there’s still time yet.
A bogey-free first day abruptly followed by a troubled second day is hardly the performance of a reigning champion. Perhaps most infuriating was that unlike US Open Champion Bryson DeChambeau’s first day which was marred by monumental fairway errors, Woods was often hindered by moments of sheer rotten luck. A pitch from a sand trap on the 2nd (par 5) saw Woods come within an inch or so of an eagle that would have put him right back in the game. On the next hole, he missed a very short par put in a moment that seemed to set the tone for the rest of the day. Nothing was going Tiger’s way.
All To Play For
Round 3 kicked off with five players 9 under par, closely followed by another 5 at 8-under, and a long list of other players in close pursuit. With scores so tight, it’s likely that the final two days will see some monumental shifts in the standings. With even a single critical error, anyone currently on top could suffer the kind of fall that Paul Casey and Tiger Woods experienced after their second day.
Right now, it’s still anybody’s game.