The first trial at The Masters is over and Louis Oosthuizen has made the weekend, but he needs to begin scoring in order to have a chance on Sunday.
Compleat Golfer’s playing editor knows the ins and outs of Augusta National Golf Club, but in the tough conditions on Friday he battled around in 77 strokes and was tied for 47th on a five-under-par total.
He was nine shots back from leader Jordan Spieth, who carded a two-over-par 74 and stumbled for the first time in six rounds at Augusta. The world number two was four-under-par for the tournament and clung to a one-shot lead.
‘It was very tough to stay cool,’ Spieth said. ‘You could say, “Looked like you got emotional out there.” I mean, you guys try it. That was a hard golf course.’
Chasing him down was Rory McIlroy, who was one of four players to shoot the low round of the day – one-under-par 71. It was the first time since 2007 that no player has broken 70 and the highest scoring average (75.02) in nine years.
Oosthuizen felt the brunt of the tough conditions and made five bogeys in seven holes around the turn. He brought a shot back with a birdie at the 13th and then made par all the way to last hole, where his 10-footer for birdie snuck past the cup. He looked perplexed after that and tapped in for a round of 77.
The 33-year-old recently finished second at the WGC-Dell Match Play and has been in good form this season, but has a slim chance of winning a green jacket this week. To achieve the dream he must take on the shots at Augusta National, which is treacherous at the best of times.