After Dustin Johnson held the green jacket for a short 143 days, the reign was short but sweet

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After holding the green coat for 143 days, Dustin Johnson’s reign was short and sweet … yet the world’s No. 1 is the favorite to win the Masters again and become only the fourth player to successfully win their Augusta crown. defends.

  • Dustin Johnson won the Covid-deferred Masters in November 2020
  • Johnson took to the field, setting a record 72-hole score of 20 under par
  • But he’s currently struggling for form – but is still the favorite to defend his title
  • World number 1 will play with Lee Westwood and Tyler Strafaci on Thursday

Considering he’s waited so long to become the Masters champion, it seems absolutely unfair that Dustin Johnson should turn out to be the shortest title holder ever.

For just 143 days, he had the honors he’d first dreamed growing up in South Carolina, all of which were administered by Covid.

When asked if he had any stories about putting on the green jacket, the best he could think of was wearing it to dinner at the club.

Dustin Johnson receives his green coat from Tiger Woods after winning last year's Masters

Dustin Johnson receives his green coat from Tiger Woods after winning last year’s Masters

World Champion No. 1 struck through the field, setting a record 72 holes of 20 under par

World Champion No. 1 struck through the field, setting a record 72 holes of 20 under par

World Champion No. 1 struck through the field, setting a record 72 holes of 20 under par

“I haven’t had it that long, and it’s not like we got to do a lot of things with the pandemic and stuff,” he said.

Johnson was in the shape of his life when he shook up in Georgia last November, with five top-three finishes in his previous six starts. It showed, as he hit the field and set a 72-hole record of 20 under par.

He may be the favorite to complete a successful defense, befitting his world No. 1 status, but he certainly won’t capitalize on such momentum this time around.

After winning in Saudi Arabia in February, the 36-year-old has returned home and delivered three extraordinary performances in a row. He was shocked enough to submit a late entry for the Texas Open last week, before changing his mind and settling for more practice at home.

“I feel like my game is starting to come together,” he said without much conviction. “It may not be in the same shape as in November, but I feel a lot more comfortable about the ball.”

Only three players have successfully defended the Masters and Johnson, who is no one’s idea of ​​a golf historian, left the press room dumbfounded by answering in the affirmative that he knew who they were.

How does he rate his chances of joining Jack Nicklaus, Sir Nick Faldo and Tiger Woods? “It’s going to be difficult,” he said. “I mean, if you have a course where every hole can jump out to get you, and you have to play four great rounds, it’s not surprising there are only three.

“I just want to play well enough to give myself the chance to sit in the back on Sunday.”

Johnson struggled when he started playing at the Masters, with no top 10 finishes in his first five tournaments. In his last five events, however, there was nothing but top 10 as he got over Augusta’s wow factor and learned to cope with his wiles.

Johnson was in the shape of his life last November, but has less momentum this time around

Johnson was in the shape of his life last November, but has less momentum this time around

Johnson was in the shape of his life last November, but has less momentum this time around

“I just started hitting it right,” he said, rather than omitting the real reason for the drastic change and dramatic improvement in his wedge game.

Johnson may have only been a Masters champion for five months, but the great thing is, of course, that he can play in the tournament for as long as he wants.

What his good friend Brooks would give Koepka to join the club. Actually, we get a pretty good idea of ​​what he would give from the fact that he still plans to hit the first tee on Thursday.

The Bash Brothers may be the duo’s nickname, but in Koepka’s case, it’s more of a bashed-up. He’s trying to play on a dislocated kneecap just three weeks after surgery.

Brooks Koepka tries to play with a dislocated kneecap just three weeks after surgery

Brooks Koepka tries to play with a dislocated kneecap just three weeks after surgery

Brooks Koepka tries to play with a dislocated kneecap just three weeks after surgery

“He hits the ball brilliantly,” said his coach Pete Cowen, before adding a wasp-like rider.

“The problem is he can’t walk.”

Koepka, for his part, held his arms outstretched and said plaintively, “What can you do? They are the masters. You have to play. ‘

It’s not often on the eve of recent majors that Koepka has had reason to make Johnson jealous, but this could be one of them.

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