At the start of moving day at the Masters, the theme was ‘catch me if you can’! Jordan Spieth’s 6 shot lead going into Saturday’s round had many pundits gazing into their crystal ball predicting a record-low winning score. Expectations of another 5 or 6 under par round from the second round leader grew exponentially as his tee time approached! However, as the day unfolded, the real story came from past Major champions who live and die on moving day.
Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods were the players to watch during the third round. Having giant-slayers and tenacious competitors zeroing in on your position is unnerving for most players. Added to that, having Mickelson race up the leaderboard early, must have had Jordan Spieth looking over his shoulder. Bogeying the last hole dampened Woods charge, but his play was reminiscent of the Tiger of old.
Lest not forget Rory McIlroy; his play for the first 15 holes was spectacular. But, dropping two stokes in the last three holes basically eliminated him from winning unless he shoots a course record on Sunday. But that is unlikely given he is 10 strokes back.
With all the hoopla and focus on the big three, Spieth seems to have learned his lesson from last year, kept his composure until the last two holes, but still finished comfortably atop of the leaderboard at 16 under par.
A just for fun fact, Jordan Spieth made 22 birdies in the first 54 holes! How good is this guy?
We will find out tomorrow when he goes head to head against Justin Rose. Wait, where did he come from? With a birdie on the 18th hole, the 2013 US Open Champion carded a solid 67 and outright second place. Tomorrow, Rose will definitely test Spieth at every opportunity and hopefully close the 4 shot gap.
There is one player who very few golfing experts picked to be in the mix on Sunday at Augusta. Charley Hoffman is surprising the masses by his consistent play and no-fear approach to playing against the world’s best. A classic journeyman player, Hoffman has a few moments in the spotlight since earning his card in 2006, but for the most part, he has worked hard and played to the middle of the pack. (Wikipedia)
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Hoffman’s record at the Majors would be considered poor by most standards. However, if he was to go on and win the 2015 Masters, his life would change for ever. This year, Hoffman is demonstrating that he can play under Masters’ pressure, it will be interesting to see where he goes from here.
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Charley Hoffman is a perfect example of how any journeyman can compete or even win on any given day! The top 100 players in the world are separated by so little, that the number of first time winners this year on the PGA Tour should not be a big surprise to anyone. Solidly in 4th place, Hoffman will play with Phil Mickelson on Sunday. Good luck tomorrow Charley!
The theme of today was ‘catch me if you can’! Several players moved up the leaderboard, but Jordan Spieth repelled all challengers. Sunday at the Masters is the toughest test of all. To win at Augusta National, playing well on Sunday is a must; it is what defines the champions who wear the green jacket!
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!