Top Stars and Dark Horses at the 2013 Masters Tournament in Augusta

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"Top Stars and Dark Horses at the 2013 Masters Tournament in Augusta"
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Heading into the final day of the 2013 Masters, this has already been an exciting, even controversial golf tournament. Among the unusual events were the one-stroke penalty levied against the youngest player to ever compete at Augusta National, as well as a Tiger Woods move that led other players calling for him to disqualify himself, while officials looked the other way.

Top stars at the 2013 Augusta National

No matter who ends up donning the green jacket, the 2013 Masters will be a golf match to remember. Among those who have been at the top of their game in 2013 are Rory McIlroy, who was outstanding at the Valero, Texas, Open the previous weekend, and Tiger Woods, whose new relationship (with Lindsey Vonn) and re-focus on his game have put him front and center at Augusta.

That’s why it couldn’t have been more surprising to find him in the precarious spot he found himself (with other fans and golfers calling for his self-disqualification). Although he has been performing well so far this year (taking three victories in PGA Tour events this year alone), with others performing so well prior to the last day in Augusta, it seems unlikely he will be able to don the green jacket this year.

In addition to a strong showing by Rory McIlroy, other names that have been bandied about include Phil Mickelson (who has turned in a disappointing performance so far at the Masters in 2013), Bubba Watson (who has been all over the place with this tournament) and Justin Rose, who some believe can put it all together this year for a good showing.

At the top of the leader board going into Sunday were Angel Cabrera, who has struggled to get to the top of the Masters since his win in 2009, and Brandt Snedecker, who “has won plenty of tournaments over the years, but is still in search of his first major title,” according to the Bleacher Report.

Dark horses draw attention, too

Just eking into Sunday play is Guan Tianlang, the 14-year old golf prodigy from China, who has played very well considering this age and experience. A fan favorite, Guan received a one-stroke penalty for slow play during the 2013 Masters, which dismayed many fans who felt he should have been cut a little slack, although Guan himself said he “respected” the call.

Also looking good coming into the 2013 Masters is Adam Scott. According to Golf Rumors, “the 32-year-old has three top-10 finishes at the Masters, including an eighth-place finish last year and a second-place finish in 2011,” putting him in a prime spot for 2013.

Other players being named as dark horses to watch in 2013 and beyond include Keegan Bradley and Matt Kuchar, who posted a great finish at the Masters last year.

It’s clear that whether the green jacket goes to a familiar name or a long shot, the fans have gotten plenty of enjoyment and controversy to talk about with this year’s play. For fans at Augusta, Georgia, Sunday’s action is sure to offer some great golf moments.

More about this author: Christine Zibas

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