IT was one finish to the US Masters last night but what we learned for next year?

Adam Scott, who went off at 30.0, ticked all the boxes both before the event and in-running.

At 32 he was bang-on the right age to win his first Green Jacket. He'd made the cut in the previous year's event, he'd come into the event in fair form but had done nothing exceptional in 2013 and he had bags of course form under his belt. This was his 12th appearance at Augusta and his third top-10 in a row.

In-running, having been three off the lead after day one and two and one back after day three, he'd been up with the pace all the way but he hadn't had the stress of being bang in-contention until day four.

At last we don't need to roll out the obligatory no Aussie winner stat that meant nothing anyway but here are a few that do still stand.

It was mighty close thanks to Angel Cabrera's magnificent effort but it's now 16 years since anyone in his 40s has won.

We still haven't seen a debutant winner, since Fuzzy Zoeller victory in 1979, and it's that long since anyone won without making the cut in the previous year's renewal.

And it's now 21 of the last 22 winners that have shot at least one round at Augusta in the 60s.

Get involved early. Played at the same venue every year and with some very strong trends to go by, it makes sense to get stuck in from early on.

It didn't quite pay off this year, but a number of shrewd judges held great positions on Brandt Snedeker after he'd shown he was in fine form back in January.

Of course, he may not have made it having suffered a rib injury, but injuries in golf aren't commonplace and you'd be unlucky to back someone in January who doesn't make it to Augusta in April.

It's stating the obvious to say Marc Leishman and Jason Day both caught the eye but its well worth considering how well they contended on what was a relatively benign week weather wise.

There was an ever-present steady breeze all week but it never really howled and if it ever does I'd be looking to this pair. Both are exceptional wind players and I couldn't help but wonder how much they'd have been advantaged by a hard-blowing final day rather than a damp rainy one.

I've been a huge Thorbjorn Olesen fan for a long time now and if the young Dane doesn't reach the very top and win multiple Majors I'll be very surprised. You have to be pretty special to go 68, 68 over the weekend on your Augusta debut!

Much is made about the difference between a Major and a regular event and the difference in pressure experienced. Some big names have never won one and there are plenty of lesser lights who have.

Cabrera is an incredible example of someone capable of raising their game to extraordinary heights on the biggest occasions. He very nearly won his third Major on American soil last night, having failed to win a single regular PGA Tour event.

Nerves of steel, patience and of course, golf of the very highest order are all required but one thing we all need at some stage is luck.

The Golfing gods perhaps felt they'd been a tad severe on poor Scotty at Lytham because things certainly levelled out this week. Twice he avoided water on the par fives over the weekend and that was the difference between triumph and disaster.

On Saturday his approach to the 15th somehow stayed on the bank instead of rolling back into the water and the same thing happened last night on the 13th.

So that's it for another year and thankfully Scott and Cabrera have provided us with the fondest of memories because we were nearly left with something very different. Up until the final hour last night, this was looking like an event to forget.

Firstly, there was the dreadful decision to punish the 14-year-old Chinese amateur, Guan Tianlang, for slow play – the first player since 1995 to be penalised on the PGA Tour for such a misdemeanour, despite its prevalence.

Secondly, there was the furore surrounding Tiger Woods' drop on the 15th hole on Friday and then, prior to the utterly compelling finish, we had what compared to most years, was a fairly dull final round.

But now we'll all just remember two courageous sportsmen duelling at the very top of their games, showing each other the utmost respect, demonstrating to the entire world how magnificent sport can be, and in particular, what a truly great game this is.

I'll be back tomorrow with previews of this week's two events – the Open de Espana and the RBC Heritage, which both start on Thursday.

Milesey (Betfair)

9 Comments
  1. eddie w. 8 years ago

    Good write up mr. F. Fine. Line between. Winning. Losing. Still. Content with. Cabrera. E.w. think. Jason. Day. One 2 look out. 4. Future. Thinking. Abt. Derby. Watford. Double 2morrow. Wee. Chance

  2. Craig alves 8 years ago

    I think the danish player Oleson must have an ew chance next year as that was only his first masters and done well after a poor start, never bet on golf but gonna start after last night, seen his prive at 50/1 for next yr at bwin and now 66/1 so gonna keep an eye for him over next couple of months

  3. eddie w. 8 years ago

    Sorry. Milesey. Just. Noticed. It. Was. Ur. Write. Up. Look. Forward 2. Preview. Open de. Espana good stuff

  4. Mr Fixit 8 years ago

    Milesey, I’ll post golf later. Just heading to office.

  5. Milesey 8 years ago

    The RBC Heritage
    —————-

    Tournament History
    This will be the 45th staging of the RBC Heritage and this year, as it did in the years 1983 – 2010 it immediately follows the US Masters.

    Venue
    Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, South Carolina.

    Course Details
    Par 71, 7,101 yards. Stroke Index in 2012 – 72.29
    Assisted by Jack Nicklaus, Hilton Head was designed by Pete Dye, who also designed Sawgrass, home of the Players Championship. It has been the event’s sole venue, so there’s plenty of course form to go on. The fairways aren’t overly narrow but you do need to find the right spot on them to attack the tiny Bermuda greens. It’s a coastal links style track that’s greatly affected by the wind.

    TV Coverage
    Live on Sky all four days, starting on Thursday at 8.00pm

    Last Five Winners
    2012 – Carl Pettersson -14
    2011 – Brandt Snedeker -12
    2010 – Jim Furyk -13 (playoff)
    2009 – Brian Gay -20
    2008 – Boo Weekley -15

    What will it take to win the RBC Heritage?
    Driving distance is not important at Hilton Head, it’s all about accuracy. Pinpoint iron-play to find the small Bermuda greens is vital and so is great scrambling. Even the most precise players will miss at least the odd green or two here so getting up-and-down successfully is key but the most important stat in recent years has been putting.

    Is there an angle in?
    There are a number of other blustery seaside tracks with grainy greens used on the PGA Tour, where form crosses over well. El Camaleon, home of the Mayakoba Golf Classic, or the OHL Classic at Mayakoba as it will be called in November, the Waialee Country Club, home of the Sony Open and the Trump International Golf Club, which hosts the Puerto Rico Open, all correlate strongly with Hilton Head but the closest match is the Seaside Course at Sea Island, host course for the McGladrey Classic, played in neighbouring Georgia.

    Hilton Head stalwarts, Jim Furyk and Davis Love III looked like fighting out the finish of last year’s McGladrey until a fast-finishing Tommy Gainey gazumped everyone with a sensational final round of 60. Although we’ve only had three renewals of the McGladrey to date, over time, I fancy it will prove to be the best form guide for this event.

    Is there an identikit winner?
    Look at past winners. Players tend to play well here year after year. Nine players have won the event more than once and the previously mentioned Davis Love has won it five times!

    In-Play Tactics
    Last year’s winner, Carl Pettersson won with ease and when Brian Gay set the 72 hole scoring record in 2009 he cantered home by fully ten strokes but most years we get a very tight and exciting finish.

    Don’t give up on your picks, even if they appear to have too much to do with a round to go. Brandt Snedeker came from six off the lead two years ago and Stewart Cink was fully nine shots back with a round to go in 2004. Another reason to see a correlation with the Seaside Course at Sea Island maybe, as both Gainey and Ben Crane, the 2011 McGladrey winner, came from miles back to win.

    Market Leaders and the US Masters hangover
    I’ll be very surprised if favourite Brandt Snedeker can lift himself so quickly after Sunday’s poor performance at Augusta. He was favourite going into round four on Sunday but after birdying the 1st hole he never really looked like winning his first major and it would be an incredible effort for him to lift himself so soon.

    Jason Day, Matt Kuchar, Jason Dufner, and to a lesser extent, Luke Donald, and Jim Furyk were all in the mix at Augusta and the same warning applies to them as it does to Sneds. They could all find it tough to get going this week and I’m swerving all of them.

    Selections
    Having dismissed the market leaders readily, I’ve had no problem finding selections, far from it.

    Of those priced below 50.0, Boo Weekley came closest to inclusion. He’s a two-time winner of the event and in decent form but I thought I’d get at least 50.0 and I can’t possibly take less than 40.0.

    Although ten looks like an awful lot of picks before the off, given none of them are less than 50.0 and that half of them are over 200.0, it’s really no different to backing a couple of players towards the fore in the market. So I haven’t gone quite as crazy as it first appears. Anyway, here they all are…

    This is just the sort of test to suit multiple winner Zach Johnson and he’s a bigger price this year than he was when finishing runner-up twelve months ago.

    Ernie Els found form last week, without actually getting into contention at Augusta. Finishing 13th with a final round 69, he actually topped the putting stats for the week which probably tells us more about how soft the greens were than anything else. He’s come close to winning this a few times, maybe he can get it done this year.

    Ben Crane has won the aforementioned McGladrey Classic, was 4th last time out in Texas, 6th in this event last year and comes here fresh having not played in the US Masters. I couldn’t really see a negative and he was the first one I backed. Though Brian Gay followed fast…

    Gay’s win here in 2009 was as dominant a performance as you’ll see and given he played well enough last week at Augusta, he too was a very straightforward selection.

    Recent Honda Classic winner, Michael Thompson, has a fine record in the McGladrey, finished inside the top-20 here last year, and will have been delighted with his final round 67 at Augusta on Sunday. Maybe the inevitable dip following his win is over?

    Rory Sabbatini, Matt Every, Tommy Gainey and Ted Potter Jr are all players that have either played well here or should play well here but the best of my monster-priced picks could prove to be Puerto Rico Open winner and South Carolina resident, Scott Brown, who I backed at a massive 280.0.

    Brown’s making his Hilton Head debut this week but that hasn’t put me off. He’s bound to have played it plenty of times, it really ought to suit his playing style, and debutants have a fair recent record in the event. Jose Coceres (2001), Peter Lonard (2005), Aaron Baddeley (2006) and Boo Weekley (2007), all won on their first visit here, so why not Brown?

    Selections
    Zach Johnson @ 50.0
    Ernie Els @ 70.0
    Brian Gay @ 75.0
    Ben Crane @ 80.0
    Michael Thompson @ 95.0
    Matt Every @ 240.0
    Rory Sabbatini @ 250.0
    Scott Brown @ 280.0
    Ted Potter Jr @ 320.0
    Tommy Gainey @ 330.0

    Milesey ( betfair )

  6. Milesey 8 years ago

    Lazio lay in wait for the winners of this Coppa Italia semi-final clash between Inter Milan and Roma. Stramaccioni’s injury-ravaged side could struggle to create chances and with the goalscoring potential of Lamela, Totti and Destro, the Giallorossi will be hopeful for a record 17th Coppa Italia final appearance

    INTER v ROMA: MATCH PREVIEW

    The first half of this semi-final was played in Rome in late January, with Roma taking the honors that night, 2-1. Alessandro Florenzi opened the scoring ledger in the 13th minute, heading home a cross from Ivan Piris. Twenty minutes later, Piris provided another cross, this time to Mattia Destro, with the same result. Rodrigo Palacio would earn the precious away goal in the 44th minute, throwing caution, and his rat tail, to the wind, slotting the ball past an onrushing Maarten Stekelenburg.

    Sunday’s defeat to Cagliari at the Stadio Nereo Rocco in Trieste leaves Inter seventh in the Serie A table with third-placed AC Milan and the final Champions League spot nine points away with six games remaining. Inter have lost 12 of their 32 league games this term. Crash out of the cup at a time when Inter are floundering in Serie A, a massive 21 points behind leader Juventus, and club patron Massimo Moratti will have no choice but to re-consider his manager’s suitability.

    Palacio is all but certain to miss this match, while Walter Gargano and Yuto Nagatomo were subbed off during Inter’s defeat to Cagliari, each sustaining leg injuries that might keep them out well beyond this second leg. The Inter injury list is long and lustrous, including the likes of Diego Milito, Antonio Cassano and Cristian Chivu, among others. Stramaccioni is also without the suspended Alvaro Pereira and Fredy Guarin.

    The absence of Palacio, Milito and Cassano has been particularly damaging to Inter’s league form, with 35-year-old Tommaso Rocchi currently operating as the club’s only fit senior striker alongside attacking midfielder Ricky Alvarez.

    Following the 1-1 draw in Derby della Capitale, Roma picked up a vital three points against Torino in Sunday’s Serie A action. The visitors twice led in the match – goals from Pablo Osvaldo and Erik Lamela sandwiching an equaliser from Rolando Bianchi.

    Daniele De Rossi should return from an ankle problem. Pjanic, Erik Lamela and Pablo Osvaldo suffered minor injuries in the wake of Sunday’s match but the first two are expected to shake off knocks to play on Wednesday. Osvaldo, instead, along with central defender Burdisso is suspended for this game. Vasilis Torosidis and Marquinhos are both pushing for a return to the starting XI after being rested for the 2-1 victory at Torino

    Roma are unbeaten in their last six matches against Inter, winning three and drawing three. Lamela is the club’s leading goalscorer this season with 14 goals in 28 games.

    INTER v ROMA: PROBABLE LINEUPS

    INTER (3-5-1-1): Handanovic; Samuel, Juan, Ranocchia; Zanetti, Jonathan, Kovacic, Cambiasso, Kuzmanovic; Alvarez; Rocchi

    ROMA (4-3-3): Stekelenburg; Torosidis, Marquinhos, Castan, Balzaretti; Florenzi, Perrotta, Marquinho; Lamela, Totti, Destro

    Roma @ 2.70
    0:2 Correct Score @ 18.00
    Lamela anytime goalscorer @ 2.90
    Roma to win both halves @ 10.00

    Milesey ( betfair )

  7. Milesey 8 years ago

    Joe Brewin Journalism student. Gambling supremo, suffering Leicester City fan…….

    big thanks to Joe for the Man City and Chelsea game write ups !

    Milesey ( betfair )

    • Mr Fixit 8 years ago

      Milesey, journalism college! Now those were the days.

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