SMOTHERMAN IN TROUBLE
I appear to have cursed Austin Smotherman as he found the bunker right on the par-3 3rd and will have a good 25ft to save par.
Tyrrell Hatton has just teed off the 10th, pulling his drive a little left on the dogleg-left.
AUSTIN SMOTHERMAN THE EARLY LEADER
Smotherman, the World No.366 who has gone MC-MC-MC-MC in his last four starts, opened his round birdie-eagle to take the early lead at three-under! Fair play. Let’s hope he can keep it up and have the week of his life.
WHAT’S A GOOD SCORE?
Aside from Hideki Matsuyama’s ridiculous 63 (-9) in 2020 when the tournament was cancelled after day one due to Covid-19, the first round leader tends to shoot between 6-7 under par on Thursday.
Anything under par on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass is a good score, though.
Last year’s cut line came at +2 so I guess we can expect something similar this year.
Gorgeous morning in Florida (isn’t it always?) but the breeze is certainly up at times, with winds scheduled to peak at around 16-21mph throughout the day. Going to make things interesting.
BIG NAMES TO WATCH THIS MORNING
As well as McIlroy, Rahm and Scheffler (7.56am local time/12.56pm GMT), there are plenty of other big names out this morning at TPC Sawgrass.
Tommy Fleetwood has just teed off from the 10th and we’ve also got big names like Tony Finau, Tom Kim, Patrick Cantlay, Justin Rose, Billy Horschel, Hideki Matsuyama and Tyrrell Hatton out amongst the morning wave.
NO MORE GOLD MAN?
Reports state that the divisive Players Championship gold man has been dropped from this year’s coverage. Shame.
FIRST GROUPS ARE OUT
Good morning/afternoon folks. Elliott Heath here to bring you the first five hours of coverage today at TPC Sawgrass.
The featured trio of McIlroy, Rahm and Scheffler go out in around 50 minutes’ time so I’ll be live blogging them all the way until around their 14th or 15th hole I’d imagine.
They’re starting from the 10th tee so will be standing on the iconic 17th tee in around about 2hrs 45mins I’d guess.
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