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No driver, no problem as Willett rediscovers Masters magic

No driver, no problem as Willett rediscovers Masters magic

Danny Willett may not have had a driver but he still fired his lowest ever round at Augusta National Golf Club to put himself right in contention heading into the weekend at the 2020 Masters Tournament.

Danny Willett

Incredibly, considering he famously pulled on the Green Jacket in 2016, Willett's only previous round in the 60s at the Masters was the closing 67 that brought him that maiden Major Championship four years ago.

He went one better in round two in 2020 to move to seven under but remarkably did it without the club many consider to be their biggest weapon in the bag.

The 33-year-old cracked the face on his driver while playing the 17th as the first round was concluded on Friday morning and, after deciding the replacement head he had was not up to scratch, he went on to make an eagle and six birdies as he recovered from an opening double bogey.

"We cracked the face on the driver this morning on 17, so we played the second round with a three wood," he said. "It seemed to work quite well.

"I've got a spare head but it wasn't as good, so we just thought we'd take the decision out and didn't even put it in the bag for the second round.

"I don't even hit it that hard, it's just that I don't like tinkering. That driver is probably three years old, so that's the only problem with not liking to change all the time is that sooner or later something like that might happen.

"It's nice to see everyone 340 out there and we're hitting three wood but this golf course I play quite a lot of three wood around here anyway - always have.

"This place for me has always been a second shot golf course and especially with how receptive some of these smaller tiers are, it kind of made it a little bit easier.

"You're coming in with six iron instead of eight iron, your ball is still going to stop on the green, whereas in years gone past, that would have been a real big disadvantage."

On the possibility of adding a driver for the rest of the week, Willett added: "We're going to have a little look but I'm pretty happy that if it's not something that really, really stands out, we'll end up just playing as we have done today.

"You feel more comfortable with the three wood that we've used for a long time now, and you put a better swing on it. If you're not sure about a driver it's maybe not worth it, so we'll just have to wait and see."

Willett has missed the cut in his three appearances since his trip to the Butler Cabin, and he was delighted to be playing the weekend again.

"We can obviously try and draw on a few nice memories, a few nice shots we hit back in 2016 all through the week and hopefully hit some more over the weekend," he said.

"It helps being back at a place that obviously I'm very, very familiar with so, fingers crossed, we can kind of kick off and see what we can do.

"We laughed, it's been four years since I've seen my name on that leaderboard, so it was very pleasant when it popped up."

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