The greatest major?

This is the big question in golf of course and one likely to elicit many interesting responses.

The choice is between The Open (British obviously!) and The Masters. And at heart it’s a tricky one given the monumental stature of both tournaments in the world of golf. They are both colossal but very different. The Open is mainly played over the old style links course, while The Masters is only ever played at the incredible Augusta National in South Georgia, USA.

So it’s a bit of a choice of rough or smooth, old versus new, tweedy traditional taking on the silky modern, the Dad’s Army of antiquary up against the vanguard of the American dream. And so I suppose at the final call it’s what rocks your boat.

For me it’s a no brainer though. That green jacket does it I’m afraid, The green jacket ceremony and all. Moreover you get to keep it and it’s quite tasteful too! None of your usual garish or dull golfing gear. It’s very finely cut and a lovely shade. I expect It’s worth a good few bucks into the bargain.

But it’s all the rest of the ceremony that is The Masters that I kind of love. You know the black-tie dinners, the old timers driving-off, the family thing, the nine hole comp, the pitch-perfect azaleas and all that palatial Macy’s window sill stuff. It’s a golfers dreamland. I mean Sandy Lyle has been pitching up and playing some very fine golf for the last hundred years. He still looks like a man in his sixties. And as for Gary Player, he seems to look younger every time he appears. It’s kind of all unreal to be honest.

Even the journalists are put up 5-star style and treated to lobster bisque, steak tartare, pimento cheese and Crozes Hermitage all week. Not that bad a gig.

However, I don’t think I’ll ever get there unfortunately. In any capacity to be honest.

I’m far too much of a hacker for one. And as a possible hack? Hmm.

Odds on I’d end up in the caddy shack.

The kilted caddie is on a roll

Yes, there is no doubt that the kilted caddie has had a belter of a week. At the time that they were teeing off in Augusta National for the Masters, I ventured out onto the Jubilee in St Andrews for the Thistle April Medal, in rather windy conditions. I bagged first place with a solid NR including a birdie, three pars, a ten and two omitted holes. Not perhaps the pinnacle of my golfing career, but a solid result in the conditions and I can just be thankful that my playing partner never signed in for the tournament as I think he would have pipped me with his NR on a back-nine countback. Or back-seven countback to be exact, as we skipped holes eleven and twelve.

Otherwise, I had a cracking practice session on Friday and was hitting the ball solidly. My handicap is back up to nine I’m afraid, but I do feel I’ve never been striking the ball better. I know you’ll find this very hard to believe as my handicap goes in the wrong direction but have faith and watch this space as I say. I’ve had a bit of a Damascene moment on the swing front.

The Masters is warming up to be a classic I feel. I bet Dechambeau in-play at 60 to 1 after he was 5 over early in the second round and he has started to get into gear. I also fancy McIntyre for a top ten place and am very impressed by the young debutant Zalatoris. I went for the lay on Rose for a top ten place after his amazing first round. He simply can’t keep that up on a course as difficult as Augusta and their are so many excellent players in the wings with 3 rounds to go.

Poor Rory McIlroy. I think he’s history. Maybe he should think about changing his caddie or indeed giving the kilted caddie a call for some mentoring on the mental and technical fronts.

Because boy, I’ve been there and back and got the proverbial t-shirt.