His elongated swing is like a magician twirling his wand. There was certainly three days of magic this past November.
The question for those poring over the field for this year’s Masters, however, is whether Abraham Ancer has enough to finish out four days of stellar golf.
Augusta beckons the best in the game this week. And amid Dustin Johnson’s booming drives and Jordan Spieth optimism, there’s a laidback 30-year-old who is being largely forgotten despite a fine showing no more than five months ago at this very course.
The 2020 iteration of the first major of the year was pushed back to November due to the covid pandemic. Precautions negated much of what we all take for granted from the majestic weekend, including the fans.
But there were still some dynamic stories to come out of the tournament, including a great showing from Ancer who was tied for second entering the final round on Sunday.
He followed a strong first-round 68 with an even more promising 67, which came amid a schedule change that had him teeing off on the par-3 12th hole.
By Sunday, he ran out of gas and posted a 76 on the final round, slipping quickly out of contention. The question remains whether he can string four days together. If he can, you should absolutely love odds that have the No. 22 PGA-ranked golfer as +8000, according to Action Network.
There are those who seem to think that we are but a few days from witnessing another great showing from the Mexican golfer.
Managing Editor of GOLF, Josh Berhow, looks at Ancer’s previous Masters stint, which came amid a final-round plummet, and sees promise: “Now he’s gained some key experience for Year 2. He’s also had nine top 25s in 14 events this year, so he’s in good form.”
The publication's multimedia editor, Jessica Marksbury, also tabs Ancer as her sleeper pick.
“Loved his inspired debut at Augusta in November when he finished T13, and he’s been playing well since, with seven T23 finishes in his past nine events,” she explains in GOLF’s Masters prelude. “He seems ripe for a breakthrough.”
For the uninitiated, Golf.com’s Dylan Dethier has a wonderful profile of a golfer who is quickly becoming renowned as much for his steady play and work ethic as he is for his off-course ventures—such as his work as co-founder of top-shelf tequila brand Flecha Azul.
This weekend’s start will be the culmination of a life lived on the course and around the driving range.
“I just always loved it,” Ancer tells Golf.com. “I think that’s what helped me get to where I am. The fact that I actually enjoyed going out there by myself, practicing, practicing, practicing.”
Whether that practice makes perfect or, in the case of the mystical confines of Augusta, just enough, remains to be seen.
Ancer clearly has enough to be at the top of the leaderboard. While the world sifts through the usual favorites, don’t forget to give some consideration to one of the hardest working golfers on tour.