The first males’s main of 2021 dominates AFP Sport’s golf talking points this week:
– Take a bow –
Hideki Matsuyama had tears in his eyes after his remaining putt Sunday as he turned the primary Japanese man to win a significant, however his caddie additionally made headlines.
While cameras had been skilled on Matsuyama, caddie Shota Hayafuji fastidiously changed the pin, doffed his cap and bowed solemnly to the Augusta National course.
Images of the gracious gesture have gone viral and Matsuyama admitted after that his instant ideas upon profitable had been for his caddie.
“When I saw my caddie, Shota, and hugged him, I was happy for him because this is his first victory on the bag,” Matsuyama informed reporters via a translator.
“And then it started sinking in -— the joy of being a Masters champion.”
– Big second for Mac –
Left-handers have an important document within the Masters, regardless of solely about 5 % of the world’s golfers being “lefties”.
This century Phil Mickelson (three wins), Bubba Watson (two) and Mike Weir (one) have triumphed at Augusta.
Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre was the most recent lefty to make his Augusta debut final week and, like most observers, was staring intently on the leaderboard as Matsuyama tried to shut out.
But “Bob”, as he’s recognized on tour, had his gaze mounted barely decrease down the board as a result of he was within the clubhouse and locked in a six-way tie for twelfth at two-under par, with solely the highest 12 and ties robotically gaining invites for subsequent yr.
Another left-hander, American Brian Harman, had a 20-foot birdie putt on the 18th that may have moved him to three-under and relegated the opposite 5 to tied thirteenth — that means no assured return ticket.
When Harman rolled it previous the opening, Scotland’s MacIntyre burst out of the clubhouse, jumped on his caddie and began fist-bumping all and sundry, in a celebration significantly wilder than Matsuyama’s half-an-hour later.
– Bryson’s feeling Woosie –
Big-hitting US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau discovered, for the second time in 5 months, that Augusta gives loads of defence towards his “bomb and gouge” method after ending tied forty sixth at five-over par following his tied thirty fourth in November.
In truth, the American, 27, was proven up by a few 63-year-olds within the opening spherical.
DeChambeau’s four-over 76 on Thursday was two strokes worse than German two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer, whose first inexperienced jacket got here in 1985, a yr earlier than Jack Nicklaus’s final.
But extra embarrassingly, DeChambeau’s 76 was matched by the 5ft 4in (1.64 metre) Ian Woosnam, who was enjoying his first spherical in 18 months to mark the thirtieth anniversary of his 1991 Masters triumph.
“Woosie”, who suffers from power arthritis, had again surgical procedure 14 months in the past. He then pulled his proper groin early within the spherical and may hardly stroll. “I was thinking of coming in after 11,” confessed Woosnam.
“I’m playing on one leg really. Plus I haven’t had a scorecard in my hand for 18 months, so I was pretty damn pleased really.”
Unlike the 27-year-old DeChambeau, whose declare that robust males smashing the ball as much as 400 yards will take over the sport appeared approach off track.
– World rankings –
Latest males’s and girls’s main world rankings:
1. Dustin Johnson (USA) 10.87
2. Justin Thomas (USA) 9.10
3. Jon Rahm (ESP) 8.82
4. Collin Morikawa (USA) 7.29
5. Xander Schauffele (USA) 7.18 (+1)
6. Bryson DeChambeau (USA) 7.12 (-1)
7. Patrick Reed (USA) 6.33
8. Tyrrell Hatton (ENG) 5.99
9. Webb Simpson (USA) 5.82
10. Patrick Cantlay (USA) 5.62
14. Hideki Matsuyama (JPN) 5.36 (+11)
27. Will Zalatoris (USA) 3.58 (+19)
29. Jordan Spieth (USA) 3.50 (+9)
1. Ko Jin-young (KOR) 9.65
2. Park In-bee (KOR) 8.57
3. Kim Sei-young (KOR) 8.05
4. Nelly Korda (USA) 7.86
5. Danielle Kang (USA) 6.47
6. Lexi Thompson (USA) 5.57
7. Brooke Henderson (CAN) 5.57
8. Kim Hyo-joo (KOR) 5.17 (+1)
9. Minjee Lee (AUS) 5.08 (+1)
10. Nasa Hataoka (JPN) 5.01 (-2)
11. Lydia Ko (NZL) 4.55 (+11)
13. Patty Tavatanakit (THA) 4.03 (+90)