SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Tony Finau has played the front nine at Augusta National as well as you can to begin his second round at The Masters.
There were no bogeys for Finau, rather, an eagle, three birdies, and five pars to bring him within one shot of the leaders and in a tie for sixth.
After a spectacular 346 yards drive on the second hole, Finau was left with just 216 yards to the pin on the first par 5 of the day. Yesterday, Finau had a look at eagle but tapped in for birdie. Today, he went one shot better after a beautiful long iron left him with an 8-foot look at eagle. He drained it and immediately got back to even par on the tournament.
Ball Striking Clinic
Finau then strung three consecutive pars to his scorecard before capitalizing on a beautiful tee shot that nearly found the bottom of the cup on the par 3 6th hole.
An errant tee drive into the trees to the left had Finau in trouble on the seventh. His approach was left short of the green, he hit a flop shot over a bunker to within 5 feet. He drained the slippery downhill par putt and headed for the second par 5 on the front nine.
Finau missed the bunker down the right on the par 5 8th hole. Hit his second shot 200 yards just short and to the right of the green. But, a beautiful chip left Finau with a two-foot putt and birdie that he comfortable sank.
The final hole on the front nine began with a beautiful tee shot down the right side of the fairway, giving him a tremendous angle into the green. Unfortunately, Finau hit his approach 5 feet short of the flag but caught the downslope and ran off the front of the green.
Putter Warming Up
A simple up and down awaited him, which he handled easily. A beautiful putt from off the green found the bottom of the cup and Finau makes the turn just one shot behind the leaders.
The greens are softer than they were during the first round. Which is allowing Finau to be more aggressive when it comes to attacking pins. Playing earlier in the day is generally an advantage, and today is another example as to why. The colder temperatures in the morning keep the moisture within the golf course. Yesterday, the wind picked up an hour prior to Finau teeing off and dried out the golf course. Making his round far more challenging than those competitors who got out in the morning.
Finau is playing alongside Justin Thomas and Louis Oosthuizen who find themselves at one-under-par and three-over-par respectively.