Good weather offers golfers full day of practice ahead of Masters

Danny Willett

Mention that he is the first player in more than 40 years to arrive at the Masters having won his last three tournaments, and Johnson will shrug and say that his game is solid, hes working hard and that hes playing pretty well.

THE COURSE SPECIALIST - Jordan Spieth. Also, continue reading for a breakdown and predictions for some key players to keep an eye on ahead of Thursday's tee-off.

Thomas was asked if he can needle Spieth about the 12th hole past year at the Masters, where Spieth put two in the water for a quadruple bogey that cost him a second straight green jacket.

The Warrnambool native backed up his Palmer tournament triumph with a final-16 berth at the World Golf Championships-Match Play in Texas, before taking a much needed week's rest at his home in Virginia before the Masters.

Another outstanding ball-striker, Leishman tied for fourth in 2013, when he played the final round with eventual victor Adam Scott. In 2015, he finished sixth, and a year ago he was in the hunt on the back nine before finishing a career-best fourth.

Former world number one Jason Day is prepared for an emotional overload if he can win a second major title in the Masters.

This should set up plenty of birdie and eagle opportunities. Johnson has not been great with the putter this season, ranking 80th on the tour with an average of 1.76 putts per hole. If he can even marginally improve that number this weekend, he should be a surefire bet to land in the top five.

But Spieth isn't running from his demons.

Day won his first major at the US PGA Championship in 2015 and carded superb results in the four big dances of 2016, sharing 10th place at the Masters, eighth at the US Open, a top 25 at the British Open before almost defending his PGA Championship title, finishing runner up.


Putting is the reason Spieth is so risky, as he usually makes the most of the good opportunities on the green.

The first time Tommy Fleetwood came to Augusta National was in 2014 when he came as a patron, ranked 105th in the world with aspirations of getting back to the Masters the next year, only as a competitor. Spieth finished at least second in all three of his Masters appearances, so there is little reason to believe he will not contend this season. Look for him to battle Johnson near the top of the leaderboard.

Lastly, Rory McIlroy is back at the Masters looking to claim the last major remaining in his quest for the career Grand Slam.

There are no questions about McIlroy's ability but his build-up to this tournament has not been ideal: he hasn't won since suffering a rib injury earlier this year.

Luck's trademark ponytail and full beard accompanies his #FearTheBeard #FearTheMane social media tags adds to the persona golf fans in Australia have come to enjoy from the youngster. Like everyone else here, more on a pilgrimage than a golf trip.

He won seven Major titles, four of them at the Masters and had served as an honorary starter at Augusta National with fellow legends Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player. He was inspired. That will dictate how well he does at Augusta. It's one of the things that makes him so enthralling. Of that group, only the 22-year-old Rahm has failed to place in the Top 5 previously, as this will be the first time he has entered the Masters. Still, he never placed better than fourth.

While everyone walks on eggshells not wanting to focus on what happened a year ago, Spieth just needs to go back playing his game.

Day wants to see the look she'll give him if this week he can win a green jacket, not only the game's most coveted prize, but tops on his personal wish list.

Statistics are courtesy of ESPN.com unless otherwise noted.

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