Masters: Grading the second round at Augusta
Fred Couples, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy get high marks on Day 2 of the 2013 Masters.
An Australian golfer has famously never won the Masters. We've had a winner from Fiji, one from Canada, one from Wales, yet never one from Australia.
Greg Norman came as close as anyone back in 1996 before his complete and utter collapse in the final round (a 78) gave Nick Faldo his third green jacket.
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But you know who has come closer since Norman in '96? How about Jason Day , who lost a wild finish in 2011 by just two shots to Charl Schwartzel.
Day is back in front at Augusta after withdrawing from the last year's Masters with an injury.
He has company from his home country as well. Marc Leishman shot a 1-over-par 73 on Friday to finish just one back, in a tie for second with Fred Couples .
Joining those two is another Australian -- Adam Scott shot a second-round 72 and sits just three off the lead in a tie for seventh.
Day, who started at 2 under for the day, made four birdies on the second nine to take the lead heading to Saturday.
He had a putt on No. 17 to get to 7 under (which would have knocked Tianlang Guan off the cut line, out of the tournament and potentially started an international incident) but finished with two pars for the best round of the day, a 68.
This is the first time that Day has led any round of a major golf tournament.
All three Australians are trying to end one of the more famous droughts in sports. The Cubs and Red Sox streaks it is not, but still, for a country that has had so many great golfers over the years, to go without a Masters champion in 76 tries is almost unthinkable.
The three Aussies seem fairly unflappable, too. Scott and Day have obviously been in this position before, but Leishman is new to the success. He told ESPN after his round that he kept looking at the leaderboard because he liked seeing his name up there.
I thought he'd shoot an 83 on Friday; he shot a 73 instead.
Can one of these three guys end the streak this week? Sure, but it's going to be awfully tough with the star-studded leaderboard they're looking at.
Jim Furyk , Brandt Snedeker , Tiger Woods , Justin Rose , Lee Westwood and K.J. Choi are all within three shots of the lead.
It was a Friday that felt like a Saturday with all the drama, which means I think we're in for a terrific weekend.
Here are the grades for the second round:
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