20°C / 22°C
  • Sat
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 33°C
  • 19°C
  • Tue
  • 30°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 27°C
  • 12°C
  • Thu
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 19°C
  • 11°C
  • Wed
  • 17°C
  • 12°C
  • Thu
  • 18°C
  • 11°C
  • Sat
  • 34°C
  • 17°C
  • Sun
  • 35°C
  • 18°C
  • Mon
  • 36°C
  • 18°C
  • Tue
  • 30°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 33°C
  • 17°C
  • Sat
  • 35°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 35°C
  • 17°C
  • Mon
  • 35°C
  • 17°C
  • Tue
  • 33°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 35°C
  • 17°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 18°C
  • Sun
  • 29°C
  • 19°C
  • Mon
  • 24°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 18°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 16°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 18°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 18°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 13°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 17°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 21°C
  • 8°C
  • Wed
  • 16°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 19°C
  • 10°C
  • Sat
  • 22°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 18°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 15°C
  • 11°C
  • Tue
  • 19°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 15°C
  • 11°C
  • Thu
  • 17°C
  • 11°C
  • Sat
  • 36°C
  • 19°C
  • Sun
  • 36°C
  • 18°C
  • Mon
  • 37°C
  • 23°C
  • Tue
  • 34°C
  • 18°C
  • Wed
  • 32°C
  • 16°C
  • Thu
  • 37°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 33°C
  • 17°C
  • Sun
  • 33°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 29°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 29°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 32°C
  • 11°C
  • Sat
  • 33°C
  • 13°C
  • Sun
  • 34°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 18°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 33°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 36°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 22°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 16°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 18°C
  • 7°C
  • Thu
  • 17°C
  • 11°C

It's Masters time again, & all is well in the land!

Jeremy Harris takes a look at this year’s Masters in Augusta.

Top prize: The 2015 Masters is underway in Augusta, Georgia. Picture: Facebook.com

The wait this year for golf's first major seemed to take a little bit longer than normal to come around but finally the first balls have been hit in anger at Augusta National as the competition starts for yet another green jacket.

Let's not ignore the elephant in the room, or should that be the Tiger?!

Tiger Woods has decided to play at the one of the most reverend of golf events having taken a 3 month sabbatical, citing (and rightly so) poor form and injury. The fact is he has a lifetime exemption from having to qualify for the Masters because he's won this championship 4 times previously and so he is entitled to invoke this qualification, especially when your world ranking is 104 and dropping faster than Vladimir Putin's approval ratings.

But if you think this is the weekend Tiger picks up his 15th major then you're more of a romantic than I am. In fact I'm not too sure we'll see him beyond the Friday cut.

Agree or disagree all you like, in fact I'd love to hear your opinions and thoughts from you, but the one thing I think we can agree on is that this year's Masters will be as riveting to follow as it has always been.

Firstly there's the small matter of world number 1 Rory McIlroy chasing a career grand slam and a third major in a row. He's pronounced himself fit and mentally ready and hungry, always pretty ominous to hear if you're one of the other players.

And talking about those "other players" who will challenge the Augusta tailor to get his size exactly right for the fitting of that famous green jacket?

Jimmy Walker is one of the front-runners coming into the Masters in great form and on top of the Fedex Cup standings. His form at majors though will give him extra confidence - last year he was T8 at the Masters, T9 at the US Open, T26 at The Open and T7 at the PGA Championship. He's won twice this year already - at the Sony Open in January and he held off Jordan Spieth (one of my other favourites) at the Valero Texas Open just a few weeks ago.

Jordan Spieth is definite contender. He was T2 last year behind Bubba and did not enjoy ending second and I think he's come back hungrier than before.

There's Bubba Watson whose game is perfectly set up for this course and he can show his two green jackets to prove my point.

I'm still a big Rickie Fowler, Dustin Johnson and Jason Day fan and would love to see any of them do well, but my dark horse pick is for Paul Casey. His form is good, his game and his mental approach has matured and he seems in a good personal space and I expect him to really challenge on Sunday afternoon.

Its goes almost without saying that I'd love to see a South African flag at the top of the leader board but I've not seen anything resembling Masters-winning form from any of our boys. However the Masters has a habit of being blind to form and all-seeing to the golfer who believes in himself for one important weekend every year. And so maybe Charl or Louis or even Ernie can swallow hard and slug this one out and bring back a fourth Masters winner for the country.

But for now, it's all about day one jostling, a big number today can be recovered tomorrow so sit back and enjoy Augusta National and all its beautiful, tense drama.

Jeremy Harris is the afternoon sports anchor at Kfm and Cape Talk and EWN Sport's specialist golf correspondent. He is a keen golfer and plays off a 5 at his home club, Arabella.You can follow him on twitter @jeremyharris55

Comments

EWN welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

- Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
- Sexism
- Homophobia
- Religious intolerance
- Cyber bullying
- Hate speech
- Derogatory language
- Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the EWN community a safe and welcoming space for all.

EWN reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

EWN is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

comments powered by Disqus