Dustin Johnson’s overall Augusta record is surprisingly mixed. Like Rory McIlroy, he would appear to have all the tools to contend every year but that’s not quite the way it’s worked until now.

If you were being kind, you would look at the consecutive top sixes on his two most recent performances and the sheer amount of red numbers on his scorecards.

Johnson clearly has the capability to go low at Augusta.

If you were still unconvinced, you would worry about the inconsistency that, to date, characterises his Masters showings. As he acknowledges himself in this interview, it is all too easy to rack up a quick double at Augusta.

If he is to slip into the Green Jacket – this year or any other – the key will be as much avoiding costly mistakes as it will his ability to dominate the par 5s.

Craig Middleton went to Carlsbad to find out how Johnson is feeling ahead of his eighth visit to Augusta…

How much did missing last year’s Masters leave a hole in your season, not just physically with the injury but in terms of missing the opening major?

Dustin Johnson

Absolutely, it derailed me a little bit.

Just in the fact that I was playing the best golf of my career leading up to it. I had just won three events in a row, I was heading into Augusta playing very, very well and I had a lot of confidence. I get injured, I can’t play and then obviously I can’t practise properly for about three weeks.

Then I go straight back into playing because I’ve missed some time so, yes, it kind of just derailed the whole season.

Then when I come back I’m not swinging as good as I was before, the body doesn’t feel as good as it did so now I’m sort of compromising with the golf as far as I’ve just got to play with what I’ve got.

So it definitely derailed the season a little bit, but I got it back with a nice win at the Northern Trust in August.

Interview continues on the next page, where DJ discusses his chances at this year’s Masters…