News & ToursApril 11, 2008

Immelman, Flesch Prove Augusta Can be Had

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Defending champion Zach Johnson noted that the opening-day hole locations were borderline Sunday pins that you really had to pay attention to with your approach shots. Based on some of the morning scores Friday, the second round is going to be a different story.

Trevor Immelman just completed his second consecutive 68, and the South African has the lead at eight under par. Left-hander Steve Flesch shot a five-under 67 and is tied for second with Brandt Snedeker at -5.

A difficult two-club wind has kicked up this afternoon, and it's making the fairways a little drier and a whole lot faster. That will both shorten the course and cut down on the number of unlucky mud-coated balls, of which there were a few yesterday. Said Johnson of playing partner Luke Donald, "Luke had a great tee shot on 10 and half his ball was coated in mud."

But today, when a relatively short hitter like Flesch can a 67, that's a clue that more hot rounds are on the way. When TV coverage begins at 4 p.m. EDT today, watch for kick-in birdies at the uphill, 570-yard par-5 eighth. Though generally unreachable in two, the hole location is cut smack in the middle of the green. Seven of the first eight players to come through made birdie, so maybe Friday at the Masters could make moving day come a day early.

--Max Adler

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