The Masters: Happy memories won’t be enough for defending champion Danny Willett

Danny Willett
Danny Willett
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Danny Willett is delighted to be back at Augusta National but knows it will take more than the boost of happy memories for him to repeat his Masters triumph.

The Sheffield golfer begins his defence of his Masters title at 5.24pm today, teeing off alongside Matt Kuchar and amateur Curtis Luck.

Willett admits he will have to produce better, more consistent golf over than the next four days than he has done in recent months if he is to pull on the Green Jacket again on Sunday.

“Coming back and walking the course, it’s not so much a spring in the step,” Willett said. “You can’t change your game like that just because you come in and feel better about it.

“You’ve still got to work and you’ve still got to make good golf swings.

“Definitely the feelings of being back are ones that are happy. It’s a great place to be.

Obviously, we have got some great memories around here.

“It’s nice to be back and we’ve had a few days of good work.”

Willett says his main task today is bringing what he termed as ‘world class practice’ into a competitive environment.

He said: “Practice is world class at the moment and it’s just unfortunate it’s not quite carrying over.

“I’ve hit a couple of bad shots in there under pressure which has been not nice to do.

“Fortunately, around Augusta, we know our way around here pretty well and if we don’t feel comfortable we can play to areas where you think you can make the easiest par from.

“The game plan may change this week depending on how the feelings are. Just have to wait and see.”

Fellow Sheffield golfer Matt Fitzpatrick tees off at 3.24pm in a mouthwatering group with 2015 champion Jordan Speith and Germany’s Martin Kaymer.