Masters 2022 Predictions
After a winter filled with sadness and fear, at last we can look forward to the clocks springing forward next weekend. 11 days later it’s the official start of the golfing season. Yes, the 84th staging of The Masters is just around the corner.
The weather patterns worldwide have recently gone bonkers. Look at Jacksonville Florida and The Players Championship last week with torrential floods and near freezing temperatures. But I bet at Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, the azaleas and rhododendrons will be as beautiful as ever. Here the venue makes the occasion like no other golf tournament. Excluding the Ryder Cup, it is probably the golf tournament that has been watched the most by non-golfers. This is largely due to its sheer aesthetic pleasure.
Masters 2022 Contenders
So, who are the runners and riders in contention this year? Well, to be honest, as with most years, all of those contending have a great chance. You don’t get the invite to The Masters without being a bit handy at this game. The limited field brings the cream of the crop out to play, from grizzled old-timers to the new bucks on the block. All will line up on Thursday April 7th knowing this could be their life changing week. It’s their chance to add the most coveted piece of clothing to their wardrobe: the Green Jacket.
Last year saw Hideki Matsuyama don that garment and here are my suggestions of those to look out for this time around. I don’t think the old guard are going to get their way this year. Experience counts a lot round the treacherous Augusta greens, but youthful talent can prevail too. Could Rory finally complete his Grand Slam of majors this time? Well, if he can get off to a 67 or 68 on Thursday, then game on. There would be no more popular a winner, at least this side of the pond.
The 2021 Open champion Collin Morikawa cannot be overlooked. His recent track record in majors is excellent, so why not this one? Although he seems to have been around forever, another relative young un is Bryson. Could this year be the one for the long hitter to tame the Bobby Jones course? At the same tender age of 28 Justin Thomas is another guy who just cannot be discounted.
Neck on the line, my vote goes to the Norwegian powerhouse Viktor Hovland. At 24, he is already a PGA and European Tour winner. Indeed he’s the first from Norway to achieve this as well as becoming a Ryder Cup player. He had another good showing at The Players Championship last week and his long driving and attacking style suits Augusta perfectly. Now having put the kiss of death on this rising star, I can only apologise to him! Nevertheless, I wish him well.
Let us hope that the Masters 2022 is a spectacle of beauty, sportsmanship, togetherness and camaraderie. A bright light exuding from a dark winter.
By Jon Woodroffe – Master Professional, World of Golf London