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Golf: Nice weather welcomes the early starters on Masters Sunday

© Reuters. The master


By Andrew Both

AUGUSTA, Ga. (Reuters) – The Masters finals started on Sunday in fine weather, with only one chance from outside that the game was interrupted by afternoon storms at Augusta National.

Masters Sunday is always one of the most anticipated days on the golf calendar, and this year is no exception as the prospect of history is nigh on.

The Japanese Hideki Matsuyama has a lead of four strokes, 18 holes away, perhaps as the first player not only from his nation but from all of Asia to claim a green jacket.

15 non-Americans have won a total of 22 Masters. The tournament was dominated by Americans for the first four decades. Three-time champion Gary Player was the only international winner until the Spaniard Seve Ballesteros broke through in 1980 and set the stage for a period of European dominance.

Former world number two, Matsuyama, clearly fell back on Saturday with nine of 30 points.

He scored a total of 11 under 205, with Americans Xander Schauffele and Will Zalatoris, England’s Justin Rose and Australian Marc Leishman finishing second on seven under seven.

There were some reasonable early results on Sunday, suggesting the course shouldn’t be too frightening, provided conditions don’t change materially.

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