Willett rights ship after shaky start in title defence

Posted April 20, 2017

Ironically Willett, ranked 17th in the world, owes his 2016 victory to another quadruple-bogey disaster, that one by Jordan Spieth, whose meltdown on the 12th hole on the final day past year helped Willett take his victory.

"You've got to realise it's a very, very small percentage unfortunately of people that aren't very positive about things", Willett said. But he had bogeys at the par-4 11th and at the 18th.

As defending champion, Willett gets to decide what's on the menu for his fellow green jacket winners and other leading players at the traditional evening meal ahead of the tournament. If not for the opening hole meltdown on Friday, or even with just a double-bogey like he had on Thursday, Willett would be making the current cut.

The world No 17 then chipped to six feet and two-putted for a demoralising eight, before dropping another shot by three-putting the fourth. "Those holes turned an okay round into a fantastic round, turned a good Masters into a great one".

It was undoubtedly a round to forget for Willett but he did finish it off during his eighth shot, finishing with quadruple-bogey, meaning he is now five over par for the tournament.

It put Willett six over par in two rounds for the first hole.

"You're nearly kind of hoping that you dropped all your shots just in one go", the Englishman said of his mindset after the second hole.

"A lot of my stuff, the reason we do that is to protect the back".

"There's no doubt that I've exceeded my expectations, I didn't know what to expect really, I just tried to keep card first year, then I was in the top 50 and before I knew it I'd won the British Masters", he says. I like where I'm at, which is all you can ask for.

Bjorn is at Augusta, and for a first time without his golf clubs since 2015, as part of the SKY commentary team. Seve Ballesteros missed the cut after both of his titles and Nick Faldo missed three straight cuts after winning in 1996.

Danny Willett has chosen a Yorkshire-inspired menu for the Masters Champions Dinner, complete with Yorkshire puddings and cottage pies. The defending champion must stay around until Sunday night to present the new champion with his green jacket.

Danny Willett's chances of winning back-to-back Masters seemed to be over nearly before the 2017 tournament got started. It's also just his third time playing in the tournament.

Distractions were never Willett's cup of tea, but with the demands of a growing family taking up more of his time, some of the trappings of being the Masters champion felt more like disturbances.