Who Will Win 2012 Masters?
By mustang6560 on 1/19/12
The Masters is a perennial favorite among players, media personnel and golf fans for a variety of reasons (it's the (un)official start of the golf season, it's the first major of the year, etc.), but it seems like the anticipation for the tournament this year is elevated a bit from previous years because of two individuals - four time Masters champ Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, the 63-hole leader at Augusta National last year - and their accompanying story lines.

Tiger finally ended his winless drought at the Chevron World Challenge last month by finishing birdie, birdie to defeat the 2007 Masters champion Zach Johnson. Sure, the tournament did not count for much, although Tiger did earn valuable world ranking points, but a victory is a victory no matter how you spin it. And Rory, well, we all know his story from Augusta last year.

Both players are set to begin their 2012 campaign next week at the Abu Dhabi Championship and the thought of Augusta National is beginning to creep into the forefront of Rory's mind.
"I can't wait for the Masters," said McIlroy, a sentiment that would be echoed by most golf fans. "Everything I do in the new year up until April will be geared toward Augusta.

"I'm going to do the exact same preparation this year leading up to it. I can't wait to get back. I obviously know my way around the golf course and I feel like I'm going back there with a point to prove to myself.

"I'd love to get into contention again."
It should come as no surprise then, that the oddsmakers favor Tiger to win The Masters with Rory close on his heels. As of now, Ladbroke's gives Tiger 6/1 odds to claim his fifth green jacket and Rory 8/1 odds of officially putting last year behind him (rest of the top five is Phil Mickelson 14/1, Lee Westwood 14/1 and Luke Donald 16/1). I know The Masters is still over two months away, but I'm starting to get really excited. And yes, I know I said I'm going to be rooting for Luke Donald at every major in 2012. However, part of me wants to see Rory storm the leaderboard on Sunday and claim what he almost had last year.

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photo by Steve Snodgrass


[ comments ]
BAKE_DAWG40 says:
I see all of the above being in contention. Part of me believes Tiger wins his 5th. Just a hunch.
1/19/12
 
bkuehn1952 says:
For me the sentimental favorite is Steve Stricker. Whatever happens, my hope is there are a mix of big names battling down the back nine; no more Charl Schwartzel's please.
1/19/12
 
Duke of Hazards says:
it's hard to argue against Tiger given that he still finishes top 10 there even at his suckiest. Last year, through the first 3 rounds, it looked like McIlroy's tournament for sure, was playing as perfectly as he did later at Congressional, but obviously melted down on Sunday. We'll see if the monkey's truly off his back. Jason Day is about as gritty and determined a player as I've seen since a younger Tiger, grinding out pars and top 5 major finishes when he doesn't have his A-Game. I was almost as impressed with the way he toiled at Congo for 2nd place as I was with Rory's brilliance. All that being said, seems like Augusta's had a string of 'out of nowhere' winners (Z. Johnson, Immelman, Cabrera, Schwartzel) lately, so you never know.
1/19/12
 
homermania says:
El Tigre.
1/19/12
 
woobwoob says:
Dustin Johnson
1/19/12
 
joe jones says:
Nobody was a more deserving winner than Charl Schwartzel. He birdies the last 4 holes for the win. Give credit when credit is due.
1/19/12
 
bkuehn1952 says:
@ joe jones: I did not say Charl did not deserve the win. I just wonder in 20 years whether his career will more closely match Larry Mize or Nick Faldo, Seve, Phil, Tiger. On a purely personal basis, I prefer majors where future Hall of Famers are battling for the title rather than have a relative nobody have a great week.

You go ahead and cheer for Charl if that is your choice.
1/19/12
 
mmontisano says:
I'm with Joe. give the man credit. if it's playing fast and firm, Luke Donald. if it's soggy, Tiger.
1/19/12
 
mmontisano says:
Charl is still in his 20s with a smooth looking swing. let him have a chance to have a HOF career.
1/19/12
 
Matt F says:
I'm looking for Jason Day to wrap it up this year.
1/20/12
 
SpaceMaNy0 says:
If anything, I'd like to see MORE Schwartzel's. The same people winning all the time is boring. (Yankees fans, anyone?) This is the best time for diversity in golf, and everyone still just wants tiger tiger tiger. I've been sick of him for years, and can't wait until he's not the main focus of everything golf.
1/20/12
 
BAKE_DAWG40 says:
@Space, the last four or five Masters Champs have been fairly "diverse". Check the Duke's post above. With the talent currently on Tour, there are a slew of pros that can win any tournament at any given time. Look at the four major winners last year.
1/20/12
 
mjaber says:
I'm thinking Jason Day has to be a good choice.
1/20/12
 
Banker85 says:
Tiger Woods shows up and has a repeat of 1997.
1/20/12
 
joe jones says:
bkuehn. Point well taken. Obviously we would all like to see a final day with Tiger, Phil and all of the top golfers in the mix. I just appreciate the years of effort it takes to win a major and feel anyone that can do it should be applauded. Just think off all of the great golfers who never won one. Colin Montgomery??????
1/20/12
 
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