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The Masters notebook 04.03.12

THE WEATHER FORECAST

It’s forecast to remain warm – temperatures in the low to mid 80s – through Wednesday then cool down Thursday with temperatures in the 70s. The question is whether it will rain. The long-range forecast calls for a 60 percent chance of thunderstorms Friday.

CHIP SHOTS

• Webb Simpson is going to be a father again. Simpson said Monday that his wife, Dowd, is expecting their second child in early August. Their son, James, is 13 months old. His prep work this week includes playing just the front nine today and the back nine Wednesday with Tiger Woods.



• He still needs to make it official by adding his name to the PGA Tour’s commitment list, but Rory McIlroy has the Wells Fargo Championship listed as his next event on his official website. McIlroy, of course, won the 2010 event at Quail Hollow Club.



• It was just over a year ago when Adam Scott went to the long putter and he missed by a stroke of being in a playoff with champion Charl Schwartzel. Scott has no plans to go back to the short putter.



“Last year here was the best I’ve ever putted in any tournament,” Scott said. “I three-putted the first green of the tournament and didn’t have another three-putt for the next 71 holes I’m far more consistent putting with this. My stats in every category went up last year.”

OBSERVATIONS

• If you’re looking for Augusta National’s famous azalea blossoms, you’ll have to wait until next spring. Because of the uncommonly mild winter and an unseasonably warm March, most of the azalea blossoms have come and gone. Otherwise, the property is as attractive as ever.



• Need more evidence that Augusta National changes with the times?



The club is offering vegetable wraps in addition to its traditional egg salad and pimento cheese sandwiches in the concession areas. The fried chicken sandwiches? Off the menu.

• Curtis Strange, on site as a television analyst, stayed in the Crow’s Nest atop the clubhouse two years when he was an amateur, sharing the quarters with Jay Haas, Craig Stadler and others. After missing the cut one year, Strange said he and Stadler climbed out a window and sat on the clubhouse roof, drinking beer and watching the tournament from there.



DID YOU KNOW:

Hunter Mahan now is the top-ranked U.S. golfer in the world, climbing to No. 4 after his victory Sunday in the Shell Houston Open.

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