Hunter Mahan gunning for the Masters?
The dramatically adverse weather conditions grabbed the headlines on the opening day of the WGC-Cadillac Championship, so the stunning early form of Hunter Mahan was rather overlooked. The world number 19 roared into a two-stroke lead in the abridged time available at the Doral Golf Resort, returning to the clubhouse with a score of -7 from 11 holes with no bogeys.
Mahan has been a steady performer in recent years, claiming three top-10 finishes at majors since 2009 that helped him into the top 30 and the two most recent US Ryder Cup teams. He showed his ability to win big events by winning the Waste Management Open and WGC-Bridgestone Invitational last year and rediscovered that form on the opening day at the Cadillac Championship.
2011 has so far been a frustrating one for the 28-year-old. He wasted a strong position at the Famers Insurance Open with a final round 73 to finish joint sixth and went in the other direction at the AT&T Pebble Beach ProAm, carding a final round 66 that got him second place. He has otherwise not been in the hunt for titles but has showed enough to suggest he will be in the mix at Augusta and the golf odds
Mahan has performed well at the Masters and should compete with confidence this year, especially if he maintains his form at the Doral Golf Resort. Controlling the ball so well in windy, stormy conditions will be a big boost for a player who has sometimes flattered to deceive.
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