Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 12th 2014 Contents A58
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, April 12, 2014
AUGUSTA—Bubba Watson likes
the way he looks in green. He wants
to get that color back in his
Watson surged to the Masters lead
with a spree of birdies on the back
side yesterday, positioning him for a
weekend run in Georgia at his second
green jacket in three years.
“I’m trying to get the jacket back,”
Watson said. “I want that feeling
The 2012 champion at Augusta
National sparked the best run of the
tournament so far when he stuck his
tee shot at No. 12 within 3 feet of
the cup. He tapped in for the first of
five straight birdies that propelled
him to a 4-under 68.
Even after making his second
bogey of the tournament by missing
a short putt at the 18th, Watson
walked off with his second straight
round in the 60s, a 36-hole score of
7-under 137, and a three-stroke lead.
“It’s not science here,” Watson
said. “It’s try to hit the greens, and
if you’re hitting the greens that means
you’re obviously hitting your tee shots
well. So that’s all I’m trying to do,
just hit the greens.”
The left-hander opened Thursday
with a 69 and went bogey-free
through the first 26 holes, finally
stumbling at the ninth. But that
bogey was quickly forgotten when
Watson put on a dazzling display of
the golf that had the patrons roaring.
He took advantage of both par 5s,
sandwiched around a curling, 40-
foot birdie putt at the 14th that
prompted him to throw both arms
in the air.
Watson made it five in a row at
the par-3 16th, pulling off another
magnificent tee shot with the 9-iron,
the ball rolling up about 4 feet short
of the flag.
“I thought it was in,” Watson said.
“I had a hole-in-one there during
the practice rounds.”
He is one of five players in history
to run off nothing but birdies from
the 12th to 16th holes.
Watson finished in a tie for 50th
last year as the defending Masters
champion, his worst showing in five
previous appearances. He likes being
two years removed from his cham-
pionship a whole lot better.
“I could enjoy the Champions Din-
ner this time and listen to the stories.
I was in awe when I was the cham-
pion, when it was my dinner,” Watson
said. “I didn’t know how to handle
it the best way, so I didn’t play my
best golf last year.”
First-round leader Bill Haas, teeing
off on a warm, sunny afternoon with
the wind picking up and the greens
getting firmer, couldn’t keep pace
with the leader. He was 2 over for
the day after back-to-back bogeys
around the turn.
Haas was joined at 2 under overall
by 54-year-old Fred Couples, 20-
year-old Jordan Spieth, three-time
PGA Tour winner Jimmy Walker, and
England’s Jamie Donaldson.
Watson’s closest pursuer was Aus-
tralia’s John Senden, who birdied 14
and 15 to get to 4 under. Thomas
Bjorn birdied four of the last five
holes for a 68 that took him to 141
at the midway point. Also at 3-under:
Sweden’s Jonas Blixt, who rallied for
a 71 after a double-bogey at the 11th.
Kevin Stadler was at 4 under and
briefly in the lead until he also dou-
ble-bogeyed 11. The son of 1982 win-
ner Craig Stadler staggered down
the stretch for a 73 that left him at
The other half of the first father-
son duo to play in the same Masters
was faring worse: Craig Stadler, 60,
had no chance of making the cut in
what he has said will probably be
his final Masters, after opening with
an 82 and shooting 41 on the front
Louis Oosthuizen, the 2010 British
Open champion who nearly won the
Masters two years ago, also took a
After getting to 4 under with an
eagle at the 13th, the South African
hit the water No. 15 and ended up
with a triple-bogey 8 on his way to
a 75, leaving him seven strokes
Oosthuizen lost in a playoff at the
2012 Masters, which is still remem-
bered for Watson’s improbable shot
off the pine straw at the 10th hole.
Defending Masters champion
Adam Scott, who shot 69 on Thurs-
day, bogeyed three of the first five
holes and was seven strokes off the
pace as he made the turn.
So much for that comfortable feel-
ing he had as defending champion
a day earlier.
Then there was three-time winner
Phil Mickelson, who was just hoping
just to make the cut.
Lefty had a triple-bogey at the
12th—his second triple of the tour-
nament—but three birdies on the
back side gave him a glimmer of hope
to make it to the weekend. He shot
73 for a 5-over 149. (AP)
Bubba Watson goes on birdie spree at Masters
Bubba Watson points to his tee shot on the ninth hole during the second round of
the Masters golf tournament yesterday, in Augusta, Georgia. AP PHOTO
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