Masters 2017: Jordan Spieth makes light of 12th hole at Augusta

And while most players tend to have difficulty contending or winning in their first appearance in the tournament, here's to hoping my first attempt at Masters picks goes better than first-timers playing Augusta National.

It is, what I believe, the very best and most fun week of golf, from the tradition to the song and of course, to Augusta National. An hour after the news broke, he was reduced to 7-1 along with McIlroy and Jordan Spieth.

The golf world number one Australian Jason Day. That's where Rob Chapman, a member of Augusta National, comes in.

The sting is still there. "That would be insane". He leads the PGA Tour in driving distance (316.2) and greens in regulation (75.25 percent) and is sixth in strokes gained around-the-green. He gave away some of that cushion with back-to-back bogeys at the 10th and 11th, but it was at the par-3 12th, the devilish little hole known as Golden Bell, that he lost the tournament.

First, Spieth splashed his ball into Rae's Creek from the tee. Then, from the drop zone, he chunked another one into the water. "It's a tough golf course, and everything in your bag needs to be working for you to play well around here".

His last start before this year's Masters may not have gone as planned, as he was bounced in pool play of the WGC Dell Technologies Match Play event. When he stepped up to the tee box of Amen Corner Tuesday, it was on his mind again.

When the tournament begins, he expects more of the same.

"It will surely be there and it has been there", he said. "Putting well next week obviously is important considering I didn't strike it very well previous year and certainly was in position to win". "I've got a lot of confidence in my game right now, but anything can happen". This particular year is special because it's the first time ever that we will have three Canadians in the field. With course knowledge a crucial factor at The Masters, a late week run by a former champion is always a patron pleaser on the Augusta grounds.

But the Queenslander said his typically intense focus had returned in bucketloads.

Willett took advantage of Spieth's stumble and held off a charge from the Texan previous year to become England's first Masters champ since Nick Faldo in 1996. While that play has never really carried over into the regular golf season, his popularity would soar if he fist-pumped his way to a win at Augusta.

As Rory McIlroy is finding out, golf and politics rarely mix.

That will make a strong start even more imperative than usual.

"I think we're on the same page". And he says, 'Jack, I want to apologize.

"You've got to hit the shots in the right spots", warns world number one Dustin Johnson. It was time to learn to hit a fade instead of a draw. But, boy, would he love to erase the memory of what happened a year ago as quickly as possible. "Even some of my losses in the majors, I try to take the positive out of it and learn from it and do better the next time".

When Spieth made that little joke Tuesday at the 12th, it felt like a cathartic moment. But one thing is for certain: He's not afraid of Amen Corner. "I really thoroughly enjoy this place and this week, and it gets better each year".

  • Julie Sanders