MORTON, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Legendary sportswriter Dave Kindred knows Augusta National like the back of his hand. Kindred, who lives just outside of Morton, has covered 51 of the last 53 editions of The Masters, one of professional golfs four major tournaments.
The first Masters that Kindred missed was in 1986, due to his son’s wedding. That year is notable as Jack Nicklaus’ sixth Masters championship. The second is this year, as Kindred opted out of covering the tournament over concerns with COVID-19.
Kindred is like most golf fans this year, watching from his couch at home. This years edition of the Masters is certainly different than most, as the tournament was moved from its normal date in April to November. The change in weather and the lack of fans in attendace bring a different feel to the historic tournament.
“I called it the silent Masters,” Kindred said. “Because without people there, it will be a completely different atmosphere. And I heard a couple players talking about that yesterday, talked about so many uphill shots towards the green. You don’t know where it went, the crowd told you.”
While it may be a big difference for the players to not have fans in attendance, Kindred says that won’t take away from the prestige of the historic green jacket; or dampen any of the drama to come this weekend.
“I guarantee you it will be a great tournament, because on Saturday and Sunday, the players will make it great,” Kindred said. “It’s a great golf course, it will be much more difficult Saturday and Sunday then it’s been so far. There won’t be anybody shooting 65 I don’t think on Saturday and Sunday. It will still be a nerve tingling event.”
Kindred hopes to be able to cover the April 2021 edition of The Masters in person.