Harrington shrugs off par-three jinx

Padraig Harrington goes for a third win in five years at Augusta today – and the rest of the Masters field are perfectly happy for him to do it.

Padraig Harrington goes for a third win in five years at Augusta today – and the rest of the Masters field are perfectly happy for him to do it.

This is not the tournament proper, but the curtain-raising par three tournament and no winner of it has ever gone on to win the main event.

Harrington tied with David Toms in 2003 when the par three was rained off, the pair of them having handed in six under par rounds of 21, and 12 months later he scored 23 and beat Eduardo Romero in a play-off.

The jinx continued when he then missed the halfway cut on the first occasion and finished only 13th in 2004.

“All wins are wins,” said the Dubliner.

“And I’ll be trying to win again.”

The par-three event began in 1960 and the closest anybody has ever come to the double is Ray Floyd in 1990. He lost a play-off to Nick Faldo.

Harrington was not the first to make a successful defence on the short course close to the 10th hole of the main layout.

Sandy Lyle, winner of the Masters in 1988, won the par three in 1997 and 1998.

Defending champion this time is American Ben Crane.

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