Date: April 08, 2013

Grant Report – Leishman more confident ahead of Masters

Convinced he has done his homework properly this time, Victorian Marc Leishman is more upbeat about this week’s US Masters than he was at his last appearance three years ago.

That year the course battered him and he failed to make the cut, bowing out with a second round 79.

"It was a bit of a crash course, actually. I learnt very quickly that I just didn’t have the shots to compete around here," Leishman told News Ltd.

"That’s a tough thing to admit to yourself, but it was true.

He thought he was ready but the difference between watching the event on televison and actually playing became stark.

"I was under-prepared for Augusta and that’s a weird thing because you think you know all the holes really well from having watched it so many times.

"But the thing is, you just don’t learn what you need to know about this course until you’ve been around it a few times."

This year he takes a new game and a fresh mental attitude into Augusta.

"One of the weird things I learnt last time was that on TV you only ever see the leaders, the best golfers in the world in that week, doing their thing and the course doesn’t look too hard because they’re in such good touch.

"What it doesn’t show you is just how badly all the blokes at the other end of the field are struggling – and it’s a huge difference."

Key to success in the Masters, he acknowledges, will be his approach shots to the speedy greens.

They’re fast, but they are so much hillier than what I thought any greens could be," he said.

"If you’re above any pin, you’ll be doing really well to two-putt. Really well.

"Looks can really deceive, because there are a few holes where you’d be way better off to be 40 feet below the hole than 10 feet on the wrong side – that’s hard to imagine but it’s true."

From the tee, he knows he has to vary his shots.

Leishman said he has had to change his game to play more effective draws and hooks.

"Mostly I’m just going to hit three wood, but I’m going to be trying to turn it over about 20-30 metres," he said.

"Holes two, nine, 10, 13 and 14 are all really big drawing holes – in fact I might even have to hit a bigger hook than that on 10 and 13 to get down and around the corner," he said.

"I haven’t got the greatest control of doing that with my driver, but I’ve got the three wood going pretty well in practice, so let’s hope I can bring it out.

Meanwhile Australian Wade Ormsby has claimed his maiden Asian Tour title at the Panasonic Open India.

Ormsby overcame a triple bogey on the third hole to shoot a final round one-under-par 71 and win the $US300,000 tournament, holding off Thai veteran Boonchu Ruangkit to win by just one stroke.

"I’ve played tournaments worldwide but to finally get a win in Asia is fantastic," Ormsby said.

By: Robert Grant