Can James master Augusta?

James Sugrue will become the first Mallow golfer to play in the biggest golf tournament in the world when he tees off today, Thursday, at 5.11pm Irish time in the Masters at Augusta, Georgia.
It is a remarkable journey for the affable member of Mallow Golf Club who last weekend experienced the pleasure of being driven up Magnolia Lane to the golf course, a journey dreamed about by golfers all over the world. James will be in illustrious company when he tees off at the 10th hole today, as he has been partnered with Jose Maria Olazabal and Andrew Putnam for the first two days of the tournament. If he makes the cut on Friday evening, he will be paired with different players for the weekend. James usually has his friend Conor Dowling acting as caddie, but on this occasion he will be guided by Tack Fulqhum. Traditionally, amateurs at the Masters are given accommodation in the Crow’s Nest above the Augusta National clubhouse but, due to Covid restrictions, James was allowed to stay there for just one night on Monday last.
It has been a remarkable couple of years for James, who won the Amateur Open in 2019, a victory which saw him invited to the British Open, US Open and Masters. He was also invited to play in the Dubai Irish Open in recent months, where he played brilliantly and was among the top Irish players over the four days.
James’s family and friends, and supporters from Mallow Golf Club, had been planning to travel to Augusta to cheer him on, but Covid put paid to that, so they will be watching coverage of the event on their televisions. Regardless of how he gets on in Augusta, James is expected to turn professional in the next few months, and we can expect to see the Sugrue name among the field at golf tournaments all over the world. Best of luck, James!