Scottie Scheffler is still your leader after Round 3 (-9) when he may have been a bit off the pace today at -1, 71 shots. However, his improved 1st half spell from Thursday & Friday shows that Scheffler’s got it all to stay consistent & pull off in a bid to wear the green jacket tomorrow. His best finish here in Augusta was tied 18th last year, but he did improve in the other majors (8th in 2021 & 4th in 2020 at the PGA Championship, 8th in 2021 at the British Open & 7th at the 2021 US Open) as this could be Scheffler’s first major title.
When it comes to competitors who are also chasing the green jacket for the first time, it’s good to see Australia’s Cameron Smith rebound today like it was from Round 1 on Thursday with five birdies at -4, 68 shots. He’s only three shots behind Scheffler now in 2nd at -6, as all Smith can pray now is for the leader to be inconsistent before he can potentially be the 2nd Aussie after Adam Scott to win The Masters.
The same goes with South Korean Sungjae-Im in 3rd, who isn’t far behind Smith and Scheffler. Now he still needs to work on the first nine holes that would help him bridge the gap between 3rd and the Top 2. However, Im still has that strong edge when it comes to the back nine holes after he finished his Round 3 spell with five birdies at -1, 71 shots.
Ireland’s Shane Lowry is still in a position at tied 4th despite only collecting two birdies during the 1st half. South African Charl Schwartzel also endured the same consistency as Lowry, but we can’t forget his terrific brace with the eagle in the 10th hole. Both players credited Round 2 yesterday with the improved leaderboard positions as their turning point, as they hope to split Smith & Im before it’s a race against time to catch Scheffler.
Will we see another first-time winner tomorrow from either Scheffler or someone else like Smith, Im, or Lowry? Otherwise, can Schwartzel secure a fairytale 11-year reunion with the green jacket?