Masters power rankings: Who's hot and who's not at Augusta?

The Masters

Who is rising to the occasion and who is struggling as the pressure builds for the year's first major?

With our Masters power rankings, we’ll try and take you behind the scenes and figure out the stuff that really matters in the sea of words and pictures.

Every day, we’ll evaluate the action and give some of the leading contenders a player rating based on how we think they’ve got on.

So how’s everyone been handling the build up? Let’s get stuck in…

10/10

Dustin Johnson

People who win all the time are boring, aren’t they? I used to despise Stephen Hendry in the 1990s for precisely this reason and I’m starting to feel stirrings of animosity towards DJ.

This, of course, says more about me – he’s just really cool – but a green jacket might tip me over the edge.

Given the world No. 1 looks unstoppable, expect me to go all ‘Falling Down’ in the NCG offices on Monday.

Jordan Spieth

power rankings

It was amusing to watch five minutes of press conference foreplay before one journalist plucked up the courage to say: “So, Jordan. About the 12th…”

There’s a lot of steel underneath the brim of that cap, though. I think Spieth will be fine and, until proven otherwise, he’s the man at Augusta.

9/10

Rory McIlroy

The media men thought he was lightly raced until the Northern Irishman revealed he’d played 99 holes so far in preparation.

McIlroy wants to make Augusta his “home golf course”. You have to win one for that, Rory. Anyone see Greg Norman milling around the 15th these days?

8/10

Jason Day

Think Tiger Woods was emotional at Hoylake in 2006? Australian Day, who won the PGA Championship in 2015, says those feelings would “multiply that by a hundred2 if he could grab a green jacket.

With his mum having had successful lung surgery, Day can play freely for the first time in months. Is it destiny? Whatever, it’s a powerful motivator.

7/10

Rickie Fowler

power rankingsHe couldn’t traipse around half the clubhouses in the UK in those hi-tops without getting a 1,000-yard stare so how he manages it at the most conservative club in the world is a mystery. I think these – and the old orange shirts – are all part of a clever distraction technique. If we concentrate on these, we forget that he’s still a little shaky when in contention. Prove me wrong, Rickie.

Jon Rahm 

Trotted out the cliché about how all Spaniards love Augusta – does Sergio feel the same way? – and has the weight of expectation to contend with this week.

But Phil Mickelson was wary of going man-to-man with him in their Tuesday practice round. If the tour’s biggest gambler is keeping his money in his pocket, it means you’ve got some serious game.

Revealed he polished up his English by reciting rap. Maybe he can bust a rhyme with Billy Payne in Butler’s Cabin.

6/10

Justin Rose

So you really need to be able to putt round Augusta and the grandmother’s choice is epic with a flat-stick in his hands. Oh, wait…

If Justin can enjoy a half-decent week on these undulating surfaces he could sweep past everyone in this list.

But, just like Lee Westwood, you just know a towering iron shot is going to be followed by a commentator’s exasperating “Justin…”

Phil Mickelson

power rankings

Thar she blows! Big Phil wants a bigger gale in the first couple of rounds to separate the field – judging his superior short game skills will keep him in the hunt.

Given he can’t readily keep the ball in the fairway he might need all his wizardry round the greens if he’s to earn a fourth Green Jacket.

He could just hit a 3-wood. But that’s not going to happen, is it?

Expect a camera to capture every single time he marks his ball on a green. That’ll teach him to be controversial…
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