There are few things that irk the all-powerful members of Augusta National more than breaking with tradition. It’s why there are no phones allowed on the grounds, why the food prices remain unchanged and why the second weekend in April every year is reserved for the Masters.
The 2023 tournament will put one of Augusta’s favorite traditions to the test.
Due to an increasingly unfavorable weather forecast, the Masters might have to consider finishing up the final round of play on a Monday — that means no twilight ceremony to place the green jacket on the new champion outside Butler Cabin.
Rain — and a couple of fallen trees — delayed the end of the second round until early Saturday morning. The third round only made it about 15 minutes into the TV broadcast before the horn was sounded and play was halted for the day.
The top two players on the leader board, Brooks Koepka (13 under) and Jon Rahm (9 under), had only made it through six holes at that point.
So with nearly half of the third round still to play, plus another 18 holes in the final round, a Sunday finish is getting dicey. The Masters have completed 36 holes in one day on four occasions, but the last instance was in 2003. A lot has changed since then — especially when it comes to broadcast rights.
Which brings us back to the dreaded Monday finish. It’s only happened five times in the history of the tournament. Could this year’s Masters become the sixth?