The veteran American Fred Couples is putting together another more than decent display at Augusta, but should we be surprised?
Fred Couples looks like he’ll be finishing the right side of yet another Masters cut, but what can we expect from the 58-year-old going into the weekend?
The 1992 winner has put together a fine performance so far, proving yet again that experience is key to success at Augusta.
Despite persistent back problems, his knowledge of the course and his silky swing have so far led to another strong showing, but just how impressive is his record at the year’s first Major?
Couples made his Masters debut in 1983 as a 23-year-old, finishing in a tie for 32nd. He followed that with back-to-back top-ten finishes in his next two appearances.
His strong form continued throughout the decade finishing fifth in 1988 and again in 1990 before the highlight of his career in 1992, his only Major victory.
That win will always be remembered for a stroke of good fortune at the famous 12th hole on the Sunday. He came to the tee with the lead but his shot hit the bank on the far side of Rae’s Creek.
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Most balls end up rolling back into the water but his managed to defy gravity and stay on dry land. He saved par and went on to win by two strokes ahead of his close friend Ray Floyd.
Couples described that moment on the 12th as “the biggest break of my life.”
Away from that win, his overall record at Augusta is remarkable, whichever way you look at it. This is his 33rd appearance, he’s had 11 top-ten finishes including that win, and only ever missed three cuts.
In fact he didn’t miss his first cut until 2008 – his 24th appearance. His last top-ten came in 2010 at the age of 50 and he also managed a tie for 18th last year. Could he hit those heady heights once more? If his back holds up, and it’s a big if, I wouldn’t bet against it.