What makes The Masters such a unique event on the sporting calendar?
What makes The Masters such a unique golf tournament?
The Masters, the first major tournament of the 2022 golf season, is here. But what makes The Masters unique and one of the most loved events on the sporting calendar?
All competitors that make their way down the famous Magnolia Lane before the tournament gets underway on April 7th will be keen get to their hands on the sought-after green jacket.
The likes of Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas and Cameron Smith are some of the more favoured names in the Masters 2022 odds.
However, with the uniqueness of the tournament, it is notoriously difficult to pick a winner from the Masters’ betting market.
But what is it about the prestigious competition that makes it so special – not just within the compounds of the golfing community, but with the wider sporting world on the whole?
There’s not one specific answer to that question, so read on as we take a look at a few of the reasons the Masters is like no other…
The Masters is the only of the four majors played at the same course each and every year and there is nothing quite like the beautiful Augusta National when the Azaleas and Magnolias are in full bloom in the spring sunshine.
The short drive down Magnolia Lane, perhaps the most famous driveway in the sporting world, passing under the 60-odd Magnolia trees that line either side of the fabled path before being met by the Founders’ Circle and white Augusta National clubhouse is enough to send a shiver down the spine.
The Georgia-based course isn’t only one of the most prestigious and iconic courses in the world though, it is also one of the most difficult.
From lengthy par fives, dogleg par fours and the infamous Amen Corner, Augusta National has it all and leads can capitulate in an instant.
That leads us nicely on to our next point — the unique, unpredictability of the Masters.
Given the sheer pressure that comes with performing at the peak of their powers the Masters and the never-ending challenges of the course, the tournament is very often won from left of field.
Aside from Dustin Johnson’s victory at the rearranged 2020 renewal of the Masters, which took place in November in strange circumstances, it is normally an underdog who comes out on top at Augusta.
Hideki Matsuyama became the first Japanese winner of the Masters last year, winning from 40/1, and Tiger Woods (2019), Sergio Garcia (2017) and Danny Willet (2016) are just some of the other shock winners in recent years.
With a tournament that carries as much stature as the Masters, it is no surprise that it is steeped in traditions.
For players, the driveway, clubhouse, skipping balls across the lake at the 16th hole during practice and the par three contest are just some of the traditions they get to participate in during the week.
Those lucky enough to win the Masters take part in one of the biggest traditions in sport though – gaining access to the exclusive Champions Locker Room and being fitted into a lucrative green jacket, something that is unmatched elsewhere in the sporting world.
Then, the following year, the title-holder hosts the Champions Dinner when they return to Augusta – selecting a menu for a meal surrounded by former winners and even giving a speech, which is perhaps more nerving-racking than playing in the tournament itself.
From the banning of mobile phones on the grounds to the incredibly cheap food and drink – that hasn’t seen a price increase in over two decades – there are even traditions for those fortunate people who managed to get a ticket the Masters.
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