How the field is shaping up for the 2017 US Masters

Danny Willett won his first green jacket last year

BY Simon Maguire 15:29 Friday 30 December 2016, 15:29 30 Dec 2016

Augusta National the 12th Hole. Image: © INPHO

As we come to the end of 2016, the focus for the world's top golfers is the first major of the year at Augusta National.

In less than 100 days, the sporting world's glare will descend on the famous course in Georgia, USA.

Stung by last year's collapse of home favourite Jordan Spieth, the fans will be hoping he can rebound at the 2017 event.

The American appeared to be on course to retain the Masters title and add a second green jacket to his collection, only to implode on the back nine allowing England's Danny Willett to claim his maiden major. 

Willett posted an impressive 5-under on the final day as he thrived under the pressure where others crumbled.  

Spieth claimed it wasn't the end of the world, but added that it would take time to get over the set back. It appeared to take the remainder of the year as the form golfer of 2015 finished in fifth place in the world rankings.

Rory McIlroy too will be in the hunt, looking to finally complete his career major grand slam with only the Masters title eluding him. A poor start to 2016 was turned around when he eventually won both the Irish Open and the Tour Championship, along with the FedEx Cup. 

Golf legend Jack Nichlaus recently backed McIlroy to win at Augusta National at some stage during his career, and 2017 could be his year. 

Jason Day will be looking to put an injury ravaged season behind him and start 2017 like he began 2016. And then there's Dustin Johnson and Henrik Stenson, who will be looking to add to their major successes in 2017.

Who's to say we won't have another first time major winner with Sweden's Alex Noren looking to capitalise on a breakthrough year on the European Tour in 2016 or, perhaps even Tiger will roar once more. 

There is also sure to be a tribute to former four time champion Arnold Palmer who passed away during the year when this year's tournament begins in April. 


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