Sport

Immelman at the problem of enjoying the Masters in November


Masters champion from 2008, Trevor Immelman, admitted he’ll miss being at Augusta National this week, and added that playing the tournament in November will be different.

This year’s Masters tournament will be played outside of April for the first time in the event’s history, which began in 1934.

Augusta National has identified 12-15 November as the intended dates to host the 2020 Masters, making it the last major of the year, and, hopefully, the first of 2021.

In 2008, Immelman made history as he became the second South African to don the green jacket with a three-stroke win over Tiger Woods.

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The South African, who was announced on Tuesday as the International captain for the 2021 Presidents Cup, reminisced over the major tournament.

“There’s so many things that you miss about being at Augusta National and playing in the Masters,” said Immelman in a tele-conference on Tuesday.

“There’s so many cool traditions when it comes to Augusta National and the Masters that any time you have the opportunity – even though I’ve been going there for a number of years.

“1999 was my first Masters as an amateur. The first time you drive down Magnolia Lane for the week is special. Every player that has designs on being a professional, that driver down Magnolia Lane is something that they will never forget. It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve been there.”

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It’s an Augusta tradition for the defending champion to host and select the menu for Tuesday’s champions dinner ahead of the tournament.

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Immelman said that he’ll miss gathering with legends of the game around the table.

“For me over the last 10 or 11 years to have been able to be a part of that group in that room with players that quite frankly I’ve idolised and been my heroes ever since I started playing this game as a five-year-old in South Africa is just – it’s second to none. To be able to be in that room enjoying that moment, seeing what it means to them to be in that room that really adds some gravity to it,” he said.

Immelman admitted that the biggest challenge ahead of November’s Masters will be Mother Nature.

“I don’t think it would be all that different other than the obvious aesthetic differences between spring and fall,” said the South African.

“The massive wild card is going to be Mother Nature. You look at the average temperatures in April, you’re looking at the 70s. You’re looking in November, it’s in the lower 60s. And so that change in temperature along with the possibility of that northerly wind that can blow is going to be the big difference.”



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