The first major of the year is finally here. The game’s biggest stars will be in Augusta, Georgia, this week for the 2023 Masters, seeking to put on the coveted green jacket Sunday night. The fun begins for the 87th time Thursday morning with the first round at the always-spectacular Augusta National Golf Club.
Jon Rahm enters as the No. 1 player in the field this week, according to the latest Golfweek/Sagarin rankings. Last year’s champion, Scottie Scheffler, is No. 2, followed by Xander Schauffele, Rory McIlroy and Tony Finau. Because this is a major, LIV Golf players are eligible to play, which means Cam Smith (45), Dustin Johnson (32) and Brooks Koepka (175) will also be in the field.
This will be the longest Augusta National has ever played after the par-5 13th hole was lengthened 35 yards by moving the tee box back. It’s still a par 72, of course, but it will now play at 7,545 yards. It’s a course that gives long hitters an advantage off the tee because of the more advantageous angles they can take – especially given the width of the fairways and the shorter rough.
The greens are always treacherous with their undulation and speed, leading to a lot of three-putts and difficult lag putts. Accurately hitting approach shots into the proper portions of the greens is critical, as well.
Masters 2023 leaderboard: Get the latest news from Augusta