Saturday, April 13, 2013

Storylines Galore at the Masters

Two days into the Masters and there is already plenty of drama including a 14 year old making the cut, Tiger Woods looming large one minute and facing potential disqualification the next and a 53 years old near the top of the leaderboard with a legitimate chance to contend for the title.

One of the biggest stories of the tournament thus far is the play of 14 year old amateur, Tianlang Guan of China. Guan has made the weekend despite a 1 stroke penalty on Friday for slow play. Guan has handled the pressure of the tournament seamlessly and took the PGA ruling in stride afterwards saying that he respects the decision.

Speaking of penalties, Tiger Woods received a 2 stroke penalty for a drop on the 15th hole on Friday. Woods violated a rule which states that the ball should be dropped as nearly as possible to the spot where it was last played. Woods chose to replay the shot in the vicinity of his original spot. There was talk of disqualification but a 2 stroke penalty was given instead. The penalty drops Woods to -1 going into Saturday. Tiger has played exceptional golf, to the point he hit the flagstick on the 15th where the ball bounced into the water, almost a too precise shot.

Meanwhile, 53 year old Fred Couples has put together two solid rounds of golf and finds himself one shot behind leader Jason Day. Couples has the game to be a solid threat at Augusta and is one to watch this weekend.

Defending Champion Bubba Watson played himself from out of the cut back in late Friday with a strong finish after floundering a good portion of the round.

Lee Westwood, still in pursuit of his first Major after finishing so close, is -3. Many feel Westwood is right there due to break through. Two other big names are in contention in Sergio Garcia who led for a while and Rory McIlroy who has struggled lately but finished second at Houston last week. Garcia is -3 while McIlroy is -2. Phil Mickelson made the cut but has not play his best golf going into the weekend at 3 over.

Former majors Champions Webb Simpson and Graeme McDowell missed the cut.

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