What a crazy Day 3 at the Masters! I would never have guessed the outcome of Moving Day, but I did call the final pairing of Patrick Reed and Rory McIlroy on Sunday. But, before we get to the discussion about this epic battle, I have to say that the number of low scores (65, 65, 65) was unexpected or was it?
The rain helped soften up Augusta National and the top players in the world took advantage as quickly as they could. The player to first shoot low was Tommy Fleetwood with a 66. He was well on his way to shoot a 65, but bogeyed the 18th hole. His string of 5 birdies on the back 9 was great to watch and great for golfing fans, we have seen this already this year.
The 3 – 65s by Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, and Jon Rahm were amazing. These players put pressure on Patrick Reed that would have broken most players, but he would not falter. I thought that Rory McIlroy’s chip in for eagle on 8 was the start everyone’s downfall, but that was not the case. I was happy to see Rory scramble through the back 9 and birdie the 18th hole to close the gap to 3 strokes.
Rickie Fowler and Jon Rahm were the other big movers. Both played bogey free rounds and pressed their advantages. Additionally, the ball rolled their way a couple of times and because of their good fortune, they are in the thick of things today. I am not sure either has the power to overcome Rory and Patrick without any help, but history has shown that anything can happen at The Masters on Sunday.
Patrick Reed finally showed the game he always bragged about; previously, I thought he was writing checks he could not cash, but today he changed my mind. I was impressed by his ability to respond to anything thrown his way. I think his fortune really changed by his chip in for eagle on the 15th hole. It seems late in Saturday’s match, but if he goes on to win today, that will be the shot that changed his stars.
The final pairing of Patrick Reed and Rory McIlroy could not have scripted any better. These two have Ryder Cup history and the anticipation of how these two juggernauts going head to head is amazing. I do not think either player will play poorly, but Rory will have to shoot another 65 to win. Patrick Reed is playing very well and I doubt he will throw his first green jacket away by making poor shot choices. Rory will to take his first green jacket and complete his career grand slam.
This year’s Masters is showcasing the top players in the world. They take advantage when they can, scramble when they must and sometimes hope for the best. But, don’t be sucked in that Augusta National will let anyone run amuck two days in a row!
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!