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« Jim Flick On Tiger's Swing Changes: "I wonder if he gets bored" | Main | IOC Expresses Concern Over Rio 2016's Lack Of Progress, Golf Course Included »
Thursday
Dec062012

What's Guan Going To Do At Augusta?

Sean Martin brings up the question that has to be of some alarm to the Lords of Augusta: based on his play in professional events, what is 14-year old Tianlang Guan going to do when he has to play Augusta National in Masters conditions?

No one wants to see the young lad suffer undue humiliation but his play on some not particularly grueling golf courses has to be a concern heading into his April appearance. His latest was an opening 82 at the Emirates Australian Open.

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Reader Comments (15)

I think the odds are high he posts one round of 85 or higher....and the odds are low that he shoots below 78 in any round.

It's not Guan's fault that they do so, but for the lords of Augusta to extend a coveted invite to the winner of what is effectively a nice little 14-man ( or boy in the case of Guan) round-robin is pretty surprising, and must be eye-opening to guys like the US Am champ who have to beat thousands to secure the same invite.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Silly P.C pandering by ANGC of all places....kid is going to be Georgia roadkill next year.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjjshaka
As if none of the other invitees ever hacked it up. Hell, Sandy Lyle shot 86 in 2012.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterkenoneputt
@K1P... Don't forget the 106 Billy Casper shot in the first round in 2005 although that card was never turned in. Previous worst at The Masters was a 95. And to be fair plaenty of veteran touring pros have shot over 80 at Augusta.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterOWGR Fan
Are you kidding me? I'd be thrilled to play in the Masters regardless of how I got there even if I shot back-to-back 120s...

It doesn't matter what he shoots, this is a life-changing event for him...
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterphil the author
There were some good Amateurs in that field, and he beat them. It probably wasn't the longest track, and he had a hot week (plus for 14 he's obviously very talented). But one tournament, 4 rounds - a lot can happen
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterelf
12 shots better today on his round, shooting a 70. Nice comeback for the youngster.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterifyareckon
kenone---Correct on Lyle, but don't forget that he shot 69 in 2010.

The course will not be the toughest thing the 14 year old faces, it will be the media scrutiny.
What did Norman shoot in the final round against Faldo? It couldn't be much worse than that.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commentergolf drunk
elf, the kid certainly should be commended for the scores he shot and for showing up and winning....but it was an extremely weak field. I bet it wouldn't be too much of a stretch to come up with 50 other amateur events that have a stronger field.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Is there another route into the Masters that restricts contestants to one area of the globe and then further restricts the number of contestants from countries with the best golfers in that part of the globe? What is it that Digs says? Follow the money. The kid will shoot 79-85 and have a great time. Good for him.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
The course that Guan won at (Amata Springs) is more difficult to score on than Riviera to me, but I'm only one opinion.
-14 and beating that field is remarkable at any age.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBlue Canyon
Blue Canyon, -14 on any course is remarkable to me! I know nothing of the course but will take your word for it. I am curious as to how long it played for the event?

As for the field, nothing remarkable about it whatsoever.....very shallow and weak.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Weak field? Next three finishers are in top 20 ams in world including 4th and 5th. Two made quarters at US Am and one made cut at Masters. The next 7 after that are all top 126.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJ Sanders
J Sanders, yes, extremely weak field. At the time of the event.....

--> event is an "invitational".
--> all 36 "member" countries of the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC) get 2 spots each.
--> spots are awarded to players based on their World Amateur Golf Rank (WAGR).
--> if a country does not have any ranked players, they can pick 2 as long as their index is below 5.4 (I'm thinking about establishing citizenship in Nepal!).
--> a country can have up to 6 entrants as long as they have a WAGR.
--> 22 of the 36 countries could only produce 2 "qualified" players, Nepal only produced 1 player.
--> the 36 countries managed to scrape up 121 qualified players.
--> the "host country" (Thailand) is allowed to send 10 players.

Two countries of note, Australia, and Thailand....and the rankings of their players:

Australia....28, 41, 58, 94, 132, 206
Thailand....80, 145, 426, 428, 832, 850, 1055, 1092, 1289, N/R.

I'm assuming the bulk of the players from countries that only produced 2 entrants, did not have a WAGR...but I could be wrong.

More snippets...

--> only 11 of the top-100 amateurs in the world were in the event, 4 of them were Australian.
--> 23 players shot par or better.
--> the guy in 29th was 5-over.
--> scoring page only goes to 61st place, guy shot 22-over and only broke 78 once.
--> 5 of the 6 Aussies finished in the top-7.

By comparison....

Steven Fox had to contend with a field of 6,443....Asia-Pacific (AP) winner had to beat about 14 tops. AP winner had to contend with only one top-10 WAGR player (Matsuyama #9) and 6 of the top-50...100% of the WAGR top-50 are exempt into the US Amateur. I could go on....
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF

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