AUGUSTA, Ga. — Rickie Fowler once told me that the initial few days at a tournament were uninteresting. He wasn’ t being dismissive or disrespectful, just making the idea that, to him, winning may also be about peaking. Similarly, there’ t an old cliché in golf which you can’ t win a competition on Thursday but you can lose this.
To that finish, in the last 10 Masters’ only 2 winners— Trevor Immelman in 08 and Jordan Spieth in 2015— have led or had a discuss of the lead after the opening circular and put on the green jacket arrive Sunday, the latter doing so after starting with an eight-under 64 three years back.
Guess who’ s leading after a 66 upon Thursday?
“ I think quick starts are important the point is, ” said Spieth, who has at this point led or had a share from the lead a remarkable nine times within 17 career rounds at the Experts, where he has won and completed second twice during that span. “ It’ s not unique towards the Masters at all; it’ s any kind of tournament. If you get off to a great start, you’ re in control of your personal fate, versus needing a little bit of assist. ”
On the other hand, Rory McIlroy has had his reveal of middling starts, especially recently. The 28-year-old, who is playing in the 10th Masters this week, had formerly broken 70 just once on the initial day, shooting a 65 this year when he took a four-stroke lead to Sunday before famously imploding with a final-round 80. That remaining him playing catch up— just twice during that time was McIlroy in the top 10 after the first circular, in 2011 and again in 2016 when he was in second right after two days before struggling to a third-round 77 (while paired with Spieth).
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By comparison, Spieth was in twelfth after the first round in 2014 before finishing runner-up in his very first appearance in the tournament, then brought each of the next two years. Last year, this individual was 41st following an starting 75 before eventually finishing T-11.
OK, therefore maybe leading after the first time isn’ t very important. Getting off to some good start, however , is. Of these last 10 Masters, all of the ultimate winners were in the top 10 following the opening round, and none had been more than four strokes back.
“ It relaxes you, ” said McIlroy, which shot 69 on Thursday and it is tied for fourth thanks simply to an eight-footer for par upon 16, a 13-footer to save k?rester on 17 and a clutch up-and-down from left of 18. “ Because you can play more relaxed, a person don’ t have to chase … there’ s just a different attitude. I don’ t know what the term is I’ m looking for, however, you feel like you need it a little bit more. That will putt has to go in, rather than if this goes in, great, if it doesn’ to, I have a chance on the next a single. I feel that’s the way you have to perform this place.
“ I feel getting off to a great start [Thursday] enables me to keep that mindset the following few days. ”
The same is true with regard to Tiger Woods when it comes to fast starts. Although he has always been a notoriously slower out of the blocks at Augusta Nationwide, in the four times he do wind up winning he was away from top 15 after Thursday only one time. That was 2005, when he happened to a 74 before bouncing back again with rounds of 66 plus 65 the next day.
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Also, Forest is arguably the greatest player of them all, and all four of his wins at the Masters came during the elevation of his career. In the many years since that win, however , only one time has he been in the top ten following the opening round, in 2010 whenever he shot 68 and is at seventh place before eventually completing T-4.
This particular year’ s opening round regarding Woods, a 73, could have been a great deal worse considering how he strike it at times. “ I could possess easily let the round slip far from me, but I got it back, ” he said. “ I’ mirielle right back in this tournament.
“ By the end of the 7 days this will be a pretty packed leader panel the way the golf course is set up. They have this right where they want it. It’ s really hard to run away from it, yet it’s also really easy to lose it around. By the end of the week there will be lots of guys with a chance to win this particular tournament. ”
Only, likely, the ones who obtained off to a good start on Thurs.