Lowry hangs tough and will see weekend action at Augusta

Mark McGowan

Shane Lowry during round two of the 2024 Masters (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Mark McGowan

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Shane Lowry cut a frustrated figure as he walked off the 18th green after retuning to complete the final two holes of round one on Friday morning, and closing out with a three-putt on 18 to post +1.

And his demeanour wasn’t much better around 40 minutes later when he again triple-jagged the opening hole of round two. It was a sign that day two of the 2024 Masters was going to be a battle and a battle it was. A birdie at two was followed by a bogey at three, and another birdie on eight was sandwiched by bogeys on seven and nine as he made the turn at +2 for the day, teetering dangerously on the provisional cutline, but with the early morning gusts already making their presence felt and forecast to only get stronger, the mark was sure to drift a little as the day progressed.

Still, the Offaly man didn’t have much wiggle room, and when he bogeyed the 12th to drop to +4, it was likely that any further slip down the leaderboard would prove fatal.

Despite failing to birdie both par-5s at 13 and 15, a superb iron shot into 14 set up his third birdie of the day and provided a little breathing space and he’d par his way home to see himself safely through to the weekend.

“Yeah, it was tough, the two days,” a relieved Lowry said after closing out the day. “Shooting one-over how I played yesterday was pretty disappointing, and then I was behind the black ball after a few holes today. I battled well. I’m proud of myself for playing the last six holes in one-under to make the cut, and yeah, hopefully go out there and have a decent weekend.”

“It’s so hard out there,” he added. “It’s honestly a lot of guesswork, a lot of luck involved. It’s hard to hole putts. It’s hard to hit it close. There’s a lot of luck involved out there today. The wind is all over the place. I’ve never seen it like this. That was probably the toughest two days of golf that I’ve played. I’ll sleep well tonight.”

Despite the relief of making the cut when he’d found himself in a position where it was far from guaranteed with six holes to play, he’s not entirely happy with his work thus far.

“It’s hard to pick a wind and it’s hard to get it right if we were playing around a normal golf course, but you’re playing around Augusta National, where you have to be so precise, as well,” he explained.

“You’re trying to pitch the ball; you don’t have much to pitch the ball in. Yeah, it’s just — you can be made to look like an idiot out there today by not doing too much wrong.

“Look, I’m not overly happy with my two days’ work, but I’m here for the weekend, and I’ll give it a run.”

Despite being 10 back at present – the on-course leader still has six holes to play – he’s not ruling himself out and thinks that if the wind continues to wreak havoc, there could be an opportunity for a bolter from the pack should the early starters find more favourable scoring conditions than the leaders later on.

Yeah, you go out there and try and break 70 and try to have the best week you possibly can. You look at it from here, I have 27 holes to get myself into position to maybe make a run at it on Sunday.

“You never know what’s going to happen,” he shrugged. “You see someone shoot seven-under the first day, you automatically think it’s going to be in the teens winning, but not around here. So we’ll see what happens over the next two days. Stranger things have happened around here, and mad stuff has happened.”

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