TUSAND OX, California. – In last year’s madness, Masters lost a bit of Patrick Cantley, a stoic, sweet-voiced former amateur hairdryer who has one of the sweetest moves in the game, if not in the resume.
In the final of 2019 Cantleay was defeated with a score of 15. August: An eagle on par 5 to escape and drill only the next two holes. With Tiger Woods and Brooks Cap and Dustin Johnson winning and Francesco Molinari and others struggling in the mix, Cantleay was easily overlooked.
But in the ninth round, he tied himself up. A month later he took third place in the PGA championship.
A victory on Sunday at the Zozo championship in Sherwood is no guarantee when the field meets for the Masters next month. But of course it can’t hurt to beat the top two players, John Rum and Justin Thomas, in the final round of 65. Just like they don’t fight twice over 72 holes.
The Sherwood Country Club is not national. But self-confidence can’t hurt either. And doesn’t have any good memories to build on.
And he doesn’t worry about diving too soon.
I was able to win one of the tournaments the Tiger won last year, said Cantley, who won his third PGA Tour tournament. So I’m gonna try to win another tournament that Tiger won last year.
It’s an easy way to observe the masters. But in these strange years, the masters of November come with many questions. What’s the best way to prepare? How does the course take place? Will time have an effect? What about the missing audience?
The top three players – Johnson, former Masters champion Adam Scott and Tony Philau – will arrive in August, where they will be diagnosed with COVID-19. Finau, who competed last year, finished in 11th place at his first tournament in Sherwood. Johnson was supposed to play this week, but couldn’t; Scott’s test was positive before Zozo started.
This is just one of the wrinkles we have never had to take into account in the past.
And what we do know is that we don’t really know.
I think it’s a unique week that we will probably never know, said three-time Masters champion Phil Mickelson, who won the 78th Masters in Sherwood. reached the final round and was second to last. I don’t know what to expect. I think it’s interesting in itself to play the same course for consecutive courses.
I appreciate the efforts that they, the National Golf Club in August, are making to make this tournament possible and to give us the chance to fight for the championship and I think all the players appreciate that and all the tournaments we have been to because it is such a different environment.
Last week Mickelson won the PGA Tour championships and this week it was unusual. He still doesn’t know how he’s gonna approach the rest of his Masters prep. He tries to choose between the Phoenix Champions Tour and the PGA Tour in Houston a week before the Masters.
Even Woods isn’t sure. Surprisingly, the reigning champion interrupted the idea of playing in Houston earlier this week, when he had never played professionally for the Masters. He left the door open on Sunday after playing with Mickelson and shooting at 74 and finished his defense of the Zozo title with a tie in 72nd place.
Although it seems unlikely that he will be adding the Vivint Houston Open in two weeks, he hasn’t closed this Sunday. And he knows he has a job after completing 25 shots behind Kentley in another uninspired attempt that has been the subject of his six tournaments since the PGA Tour resumed in June after a gap caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
M. Woods has repeatedly complained about the lack of spectators at the tournaments due to the coronavirus protocols, an aspect that will be on the ground at the Augusta National and which he believes is difficult to understand.
Sometimes we go to the green before we leave, and at 12 and 13 we hear the roar, they come back to the club, and [this year] there is nothing, says Woods. So that’s one of the things I’ve been thinking about these past few weeks, this is what it’s gonna look like.
Thomas agrees. He felt he missed the opportunity to sneak in on Sunday by flattening the last 12 holes and playing 5 in a pair. Lessons learned, he says.
I have to find a way to stay a little more focused there,” said Thomas, who was 12th at the Masters last year. It’s crazy, but sometimes it’s hard to maintain that killer instinct and stay close when it’s as quiet as the street.
It’s hard, but we all have to deal with it, and I just have to find a slightly better way to do it here in the next few weeks, because I have a big event on the track that I love. I think I play well and I have a big chance of winning. There are many positive things to report this week. I can’t consider it a bad week, but it’s frustrating when it doesn’t work out.
And then there’s Rory McElroy. We slept on McElroy for a while because he hasn’t done much since his restart. Surprisingly, in 12 tournaments up to and including June, the four-time main champion has only two top-10 spots with no chance of beating the ninth from behind.
But he shot 29 birds in a week in Sherwood, 67-66 on the weekend. But he did not draw back until the 17th – 8 shots, because he also had three double gods and eight gods. Too many mistakes, he said.
Yet it never hurts to make a lot of birds.
McElroy knows about the riots that broke out on Augustus National Road. He’s been doing it since he won the Grand Slam in the Masters career by winning the Open 2014, not to mention his 54 holes in 2010. Since then, his career helmet has been cracked five times, but he couldn’t do it.
And the next year, McElroy likes the way it shakes. Think about how to minimize mistakes. And turn a negative – no spiders – into a positive.
I prefer that, Mr. McEilroy. There’s not much hype. Not so much… but not so much noise. I prefer that.
He’s certainly a different kind of master.