There is no doubt that the US Masters, which should have been played over the Easter weekend but which is now rescheduled for 9-15 November, will have a very different feel to it on a long course that is going to play much longer, in the much cooler Augusta temperatures and on far slower greens because of the additional moisture.
According to RORY McILROY, the Northern Irishman believes that it could also aid his bid to complete the career Grand Slam. He needs just the US Masters to complete his set of Major Championships and he is hoping that he can gain the Green Jacket with victory at Augusta in September.
McIlroy did not add to his Major count in 2019. However, he ended his season by sealing the FedEx Cup on the PGA Tour following success in the Tour Championship at East Lake.
The Northern Irishman has shown some good form around Augusta so it is a course he is very comfortable with.
It is the only major that he is yet to win and as a result of the rescheduled date he thinks that the new dynamics could possibly inspire a maiden Augusta victory.
Of course it is not only the Masters that has been affected by the coronavirus lockdown. On March 12, the tour’s main event, The Players Championship, was cancelled mid tournament. A number of other upcoming tournaments also bit the dust as the global pandemic had serious implications in golf, seriously affecting the calendars on both the European Tour and PGA Tour.
Eleven European Tour events were called off in addition to the Open being cancelled, while the other three majors have all been rescheduled for the second half of the year.
Social media can be a wonderful thing as the likes of Rory McIlroy are now able to get much closer to their supporters and to the golfing public. Such outlets can also enable many more live interviews and interactions and as the celebs are able to deal with approaches at times of their own choosing we can also get much more candid interviews and quotes.
Speaking to Michelle Wie on an Instagram with Nike Golf, McIlroy was able to share just why he feels the Masters is so special, saying: ‘The Masters means so much. Obviously it’s the last major for me to win but, putting that aside, it is such a unique place, so many great memories already. Any time you get to play at Augusta is a lot of fun.
‘November is going to be different, very cold, the course could play very long. It plays long already but it can play very long. The greens may not be as fast depending on the moisture.
‘I think it will be a different feel, it’s at the back end of the year. Two of the majors have already been played, hopefully the Ryder Cup’s already been played. People will be in their routine and in the flow a little bit more.
‘I always feel there’s this bit of anticipation going into Augusta, the first big event of the year. There’s all this hype.
‘I don’t think it will feel like that this year, it will feel different but it’s something I’m looking forward to. It’s going to be a different Masters this year but personally, maybe selfishly, that’s what I need to get the jacket.’
Michelle Wie, who at the age of 10, became the youngest player to qualify for a USGA amateur championship, also asked McIlroy about the Ryder Cup, which will be held at Whistling Straits, Kohler, Wisconsin, 22-27 Sept.
‘You’re not just playing for yourself, you’re playing for your team-mates, you’re playing for your country, you’re playing for a lot of different people,’ McIlroy said.
‘The Ryder Cup is the biggest and most intense atmosphere you can play under. If you can handle it, you can handle being in contention at the majors.’