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Storms threaten turbulent start to 88th Masters at Augusta National

Posted : 11 April 2024

The 88th Masters at Augusta National is poised for a turbulent start on Thursday as rain and scattered thunderstorms threaten to disrupt the opening round, particularly between 6 am and 1 pm local time. This weather forecast has led to delayed gate openings and potential interruptions to the first-round schedule, with honorary starters Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, and Tom Watson scheduled to kick off proceedings at 7:40 am, followed by the first group teeing off 20 minutes later.


Among the notable pairings for the opening round, world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler and second-ranked Rory McIlroy headline a dream matchup, joined by Tokyo Olympic champion Xander Schauffele. Scheffler, aiming for his second Masters title in three seasons, faces stiff competition from McIlroy, who eyes a career grand slam with a victory at Augusta National, while Schauffele seeks his maiden major triumph.


McIlroy, aware of the challenges posed by Augusta National, emphasizes the need for patience and discipline on the course, acknowledging the temptation to take risky shots. Meanwhile, Scheffler highlights the unpredictable winds and the importance of maintaining composure and trust in one's game amidst the challenging conditions.


Another feature trio to watch includes Spain's defending champion Jon Rahm, England's Matt Fitzpatrick, and 20-year-old American Nick Dunlap, teeing off at 10:42 am. Rahm aims to become only the fourth player to achieve back-to-back Masters triumphs, following in the footsteps of legends like Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, and Nick Faldo, while other contenders like Viktor Hovland and Cameron Smith aim to make their mark on golf's grandest stage.


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